At last things are settling down into our 'Summer' way of life here on the farm. Today sheep and this year's lambs have arrived for the Summer and are in the big pasture. Each mum has two babies (any more and it is difficult for sheep as they have only two tits each). What always makes me smile is that mum lets the lambs wander wherever they like and then, when she wants them, she just calls - once. Immediately her two come to her. All sheep sound alike to me, but a lamb recognises its mum's call and I have never seen a lamb disobey that call to come.
Also heifers have come for the barn pasture - eleven of them, some British Blue Cross and some Limousin Cross. They are a frisky lot at the moment.
I have been gardening today and have had little time, but once things settle down I will post photographs of both the sheep and lambs and of the heifers.
On the Lane things are really beautiful. Cow parsley is a froth of white blossom and the hawthorn hedge is covered in May blossom, so there is a lovely almondy smell as you walk down. But look carefully in the grass and you will find so many treasures. There are patches of deep pink campion, swathes of ladies' bedstraw and one large patch of Germander Speedwell (Bird's eye) which is the deepest, most beautiful blue. The buttercups are going back now but there is plenty to take their place.
Silaging is still to come for us and I must say that I am rather pleased about that because as I walked the Lane after lunch each silage meadow had curlew giving alarm calls and hovering over the long grass as I passed - a sign that there are nests on the ground.
The farmer and I bedded out all our tubs and pots this afternoon, so now we can tick that job off the list. The trouble with gardening is that it is never done. You can't spend an afternoon working in the garden and then come in thinking 'well that's the garden done' because it isn't. By morning weeds will have sprung up in places where you didn't see them yesterday, green fly, black spot and the like will have found something to suit their taste - and leave these things for a week and they will have taken over.
There is something to be said for a concrete back yard.