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Getting on with things.......


Well howdy folks and how y’all been keeping? It seems like an age since I last shared any exploits with you and it’s all down to being bogged down with work and some family matters.

Unfortunately, the garden has taken a bit of a battering in recent weeks and I’m currently waiting for the weather to dry somewhat before I can hoover up the 47 million or so leaves shed from next doors mighty Oak! It’s so frustrating as the sun appears on my days in work, albeit for short periods but soon as I’m off…….well, take a look!!

So, with little spare time and or feeling bushed out, I’ve not been able to do a great amount out in the garden but, I thought I’d share what little progress I have made with you. The picture you are about to see was taken about 2 weeks ago and is of the leaves by the pond. It has got worse since!!

This second picture was taken of the other side of the garden….a few less leaves there….

However, about a week or so ago, we had some strong, swirly winds that basically whipped up all the leaves by the pond and dropped them on the area in the pic above under the conifers!! With all the ones that have dropped as well, since, the garden is going to give me lots of good mulching gear methinks!

So, what progress did I make? Well, you may remember from an old blog, the path I sort of laid and I had explained how I intended taking the path around the side of the decking as well. That was the next move with what resources I had available So, I started by taking off the top layer of turf from the chosen area….

SO, with my half-moon, I started making some squares in the ground….

Then, I started to take up the soil….

After a while, I got this far…..

Before I stopped for a wee while and spotted my old friend and companion looking down on me….

Little did he know that he was also being watched himself…..

….AND, someone was watching the one watching him….Confused, you should be!!

Whilst all this watching and staring was going on, I completed the removal of the top soil….

After I had made a suggestion to Ali and she agreed, I started to dig 2 holes on the now visible soil…

I chucked some of this shi…..muck in them and……

Planted my 2 lavenders in the ground so they will smell as you brush past them. Blueberries and Cream…..

And Butterfly…..

And a couple of pics with the gravel down and covering the area….

It’s getting there slowly but as I had pretty much run out of gravel – more in the new Year, xmas to do first – I decided to do a couple of other quick jobs.

Firstly, I covered some of my pots that are currently holding bulbs for the Spring, so that Nutty and his squirrel friends couldn’t get to them…..

Then, you may remember the bits of old trellis I used to make a net cover over the pond to catch the leaves from the mighty Oak…..

Well, it kinda worked and kinda didn’t as lots of stray leaves were blowing under the net, so, I removed it and just put some net across the pond and held it down with the stones around the edge……

Then, everyone turned their heads skywards….

It didn’t look good and so much so, that I turned it in for the day and within 15 seconds of getting indoors, the heavens opened so ggod timing all round I fancy.

Over the following weeks, up to managing to spend some time back on here, I took some more pics which you can see below….

Lovely little fellow…

‘How do I reach those nuts man? Oh dear, the blood is rushing to my head…’

‘Gotacha, ya pesky varmit!!!’

The look on his face says it all…..’I’ve been caught red-handed!’

When all the nuts have gone, you simply climb to the top of the nearest tree and look for more….

Not usually found in the rubbish sack though, eh!!!

So, that’s about it for now. Not a lot done but a bit and a bit is better than none I guess!


More blog posts by oddbillie

Previous post: A Little Ode to GoY........

Next post: Squirrels just love LEGO, don'cha know!!



Such a lot of work there oddbillie so must be feeling really smug now it's all done- till the next project lol. Brilliant photo's of your 'audience' !!

13 Nov, 2009


I was thinking more tired than smug Aster!

Still loads to do and want to finish this section after xmas. We want a wooden arch with a rose growing up and over it in memory of Ali's mum and more gravel continuing up to the shed and back gate. Also want some more random slabs for the part shown by the lavender so more expense and time but we'll get there....

Thanks for the kind comments as well:0)

13 Nov, 2009


Oh HOW do you - DAN ( not Ray ) get such wonderful shots of squidgies and robins? We don't get squidgies, but we do have robins, and every time I whip out my camera they vanish, little b@ggers! Guess I'm just not patient enough.

Your hard work in the garden looks like it's paying off! Have you cut back the lavenders? If not, I'd do it soonish ( she said, not having done hers, yet ) just into the green growth, not the hardwood, give them a good chance for next year!

Looking good, Dan ( definitely not Ray....)

13 Nov, 2009


I'm amazed at the wildlife photos Dan, I never get a chance to take shots like this! :~((

13 Nov, 2009


A hundred times better OB and less grass to cut..I wish i had as many Critters in my garden, I only see a few spuggies and an odd Pheasent :))

13 Nov, 2009



Thanks B. I just need the rain and wind to subside and I can get out there to cut it. I'm off again Sunday so I will make a note NOW to do it then. How far down under the flowers do I cut and I assume on all the stems as well?

We've got 2 squigs and the newest addition is the one on the nut feeder funny when they are chasing the birds and bouncing off the rees:0)

13 Nov, 2009


Ooh, crossed over with you both there guys!

Thanks Digs. Believe me, there are 20 'not-so-good' ones for every half decent one but that's the wonder of digital can just snap away and if they're a bit naff, delete em! Also, I tend to wait around for opportune moments and often miss that awesome shot as the camera is upstairs or I've just walked back in and missed it! Still, it's worth it to get one or two nice shots.

Hi YDD! Long time no speak. Hope you're well. Still lots to do after xmas but we gonna miss a main holiday again next year so we can finish the garden, well, continue with it because as we know, a garden is a project never finished!! Oh, and what are spuggies??????

13 Nov, 2009


Lovely wild life pictures I just love the robin and the sqiggle and your garden is really nice.(Spuggies are sparrows)

13 Nov, 2009


Ah, thanks Mavis on all counts! Where does the name originate from?

13 Nov, 2009


Just give the lavenders a 'haircut', Dan....NOT into any of the older wood ( it doesn't regenerate if you cut it back too far ) if you 'crop' it from the base of the flowering stems ( the softish, floppier stuff ) they'll be fine!

13 Nov, 2009


Anyone know where 'spuggies/spugs' comes from? I'm from Yorkshire and have known them as 'spuggies' for ages, but I don't think it's a Yorkshire derivation, particularly.....we always called them 'sparrers' when I was a kid.

13 Nov, 2009


The same as Squigie's I think OB :) I would rather spend money on my gardens than a holiday, The things we can do with all that money, Once the holiday is over, Thats it.. Gone.. Happy that your back by the way.. Missed Ya... Dee..

13 Nov, 2009


Hi Oddbillie and Bscott spuggie is a Tyneside slang/ dialect for the sparrow as I am from Sunderland I would say its a Mackem slang word but the geordies out there might think different!

13 Nov, 2009


Thank you,'s always nice to know where these dialect words/names come from. 'Spuggies' was fairly common in Yorkshire, but as that's 'next door' ( sort of ) to Sunderland no surprise that it's known over the border!

13 Nov, 2009


Hi OB :)))
Your garden is looking brilliant!! I love the gravel area, and the lavenders....and how it all seems to be coming together! Well done both of proud of you....keep it up....a garden is for life!
Best wishes,
Di x

13 Nov, 2009


I'm tired just reading that! Lol! But do you really think thet teeny bit of net will keep Nutty out of the plantpot? :~)D

13 Nov, 2009


Oooh! Squidgers! They might look cuddly, but they don't half cause hassle in the garden....used to suffer from them in Kent! They dug up bulbs and planted acorns instead - oh JOY! Oak seedlings everywhere!

Your 'improvements' do, OB...if you see what I mean? Good work there....:-))

13 Nov, 2009


well done with the gravel garden Dan, looks good with the plants in there to, i love your little pond, do you have a pump in it or not? im still pondering lol on the idea of one to , always nice to see your little helper to, he`s so cute,:o))

13 Nov, 2009


Brilliant Dan, obviously a lot of hard work gone into that, I love the lavender when you brush up against it too, smells divine. Hope you did'nt overdo it and you managed to get some 'you' time :o))) Some fantastic wildlife shots again too.

13 Nov, 2009


Fantastic Dan, you have worked really hard. Well done. It looks great. Love the wildlife photos. :o)

14 Nov, 2009


Thanks all for the kind comments.

Bscott: Lavender is getting a short, back and sides tomorrow!

Crazydi: Thnaks and glad you like. High praise indeed from someone with such a wonderful garden themselves....thankyou.

MP: Whether the net keeps squig out or not, it doesn't matter......I have a shotgun......JUST KIDDING FOLKS!!!! It's worked so far but we will put up with any harassment they choose to give us or our garden just to watch their antics. They're brilliant entertainment but unfortunately, you can't SKYPLUS them when you're in work!!!

Spritz: Why thank you ma'am!

San: No pump in the pond or fish. Hoping to attract frogs and the like....who knows? The birds and squigs used it too before Icovered it for winter - for cleaning and drinking etc! Go on, make it the project for next year. Only a small one but hope you ain't got clay to dog out for the hole.....nightmare!

Bob: Dear Bob.....wonderful to see your comment and know that you're officially back home where you belong! Never liked lavender and always though of those awful sweets Parma Violets but I actually love it now and will stroke it to get the smell on my puds when I'm out there. Always work too hard mate, that's what me and you understand but the girls don't....remember!!
Glad youlik the wildlife shots too. I was pleased with them meself.

Gilli: Hi there! Hope you're well. Thanks and glad you like it!

Here's to the continuation of it all next year!!

14 Nov, 2009


It looks great Oddbille You can see all yor hard work. The photos of the animals are lovely as well

14 Nov, 2009


Well done Oddbillie. Great photos. Squidgies? Squidgers? I've called them squiddles ever since my son was young! 40 years on I,m still daft enough to use several of his pronunciations.

14 Nov, 2009


And me! They sort of stick, don't they! LOL.

14 Nov, 2009


thanx Dan i might have a go, i dont want fish so guess i dont need a pump, like you just for wildlife, how deep is it, i do have clay soil to :o((

14 Nov, 2009


We actually bought a plastic moulding to drop into the hole which was a bit of a pain but we did it and then back filled .

It may be better to do a hole and use liner but that seemed to work out extremely expensive! The moulding is about 4' across by about 2' 5" wide and about 2' or so deep. I got all the plants required and after weeks of murkiness, the water is now very clear.

The clay was made worse because we are a corner plot and I think the builders just dumped all the old stones/bricks under our garden - yeh, thanks guys!!

Give it a go as it needn't be a big area.

14 Nov, 2009


i have a liner already Dan so i may do this, thought having a pump kept it clean or do some plants do that? sorry to go on lol

14 Nov, 2009


You can get plants that'll keep it clean, San! Cant remember which ones though! How you doing? Feeling fit yet???

14 Nov, 2009


Yeuch! I dont like Parma Violets either and you can still buy them!!!

14 Nov, 2009


They're lovely!! :~)D

14 Nov, 2009


San, I bought a set of plants from an online company and got all different ones plus 5 snails so I thought it was pretty good vaalue. Will try and find the site if it helps....if only to get some info off it!

Bob: PV's were totally gross...and stillare. I preferred Fizzers....same type of packet but all pastel colours!

14 Nov, 2009


Now yer talkin' and love Hearts ded seedy words on them though. And sherbet and kaylai with a liquorice stick just to make yer teeth black as hell. :o))))

15 Nov, 2009


cheers Dan that would be good ;o)

15 Nov, 2009


BoB: I know I'm a bit younger than yow but see if you remember any of these old favourites:

COLA BOTTLES - not the fizzy ones....YUK!
TEXAN BARS - one of my all_time favourites!
OPAL FRUITS - made to make your mouth water!
GOLDEN NUGGETS - bubble gum

God, I'm sooooooooooo hungry!!

15 Nov, 2009


i remember most there Dan, grrr my son uses that word,,"tad" it drives me mad lol

15 Nov, 2009


How's that San:0)))))

15 Nov, 2009


what how i remember them Dan or the tad word lol dont go getting me confused here

15 Nov, 2009


No, I changed the 'tad' to a 'bit' how's that for you? !! Lol

15 Nov, 2009


lol nice one Dan,,, :o))

15 Nov, 2009


Wagon Wheels the size of wagon wheels - not 50p pieces!

16 Nov, 2009


Rowntree's Fruit Gums! (but I didn't like the black ones...)

Fry's 'Five Boys'.

That funny shaped small chocolate bar with soft toffee inside - an oval, but with a 'waist'...does anyone remember the name?

Pear drops - mmmmm...

Those peppermints - golden, and again a funny shape, like a cube only kind of twisted. Loved them - but can't quite remember - were they called 'Peppermint cushions'??

16 Nov, 2009


baz remembers them barbara ,, he thought it was something cup! does that ring a bell

16 Nov, 2009


Oh! My! Dan I remember everyone of those. And Ponty you got it in one Waggon wheels are no way as big as they use to be, they were huge, they make everything smaller these days ........... Lily, Sue ... Dont! even go there? hehehe

16 Nov, 2009


Ali like Jammy wagon wheels!

How about Fry's five centres and Old Jamaica chocolate bars.....
CARAMAC - mmmmmmmmmmmmmm
Munchies - still available!!
Cough sweets
Trebor lollies
Oyster shell from the ice-cream man!!

Spritz: Wasn't the name something like Golden Barrel or similar.....bear in mind I am very young!!

17 Nov, 2009


I think it was Golden Cup, & you're not THAT young!!

17 Nov, 2009


think your right mari,, so baz says, he said cup :o)

17 Nov, 2009


Oh, you're awake then MP. HAve you not got something else you should be doing other than leading these kind folk into a sense of me being old? I am but a babe in arms and merely joined this site to get my cub scout badge for helping my elders.....:0)))) LoL!!

How's you dear?

17 Nov, 2009


Who're you trying to kid??? LOL!
I'm kna............ very tired!! :~) LOTS of studying, a field trip & a presentation to do, & thats just THIS week! HELP!!!
Ach, i'll be done with by lunchtime friday, & I can sleep late tomorrow!

17 Nov, 2009



Good to know they're keeping you busy. Don't want the old joints to cease up do we.....:0)))))))~~

18 Nov, 2009


They already have!!! :~(( I've been asleep on & off all day today! In the middle of printing stuff off for tomorrow & editing the presentation for Friday!! Ran out of paper so had to trek out for more tonight. So I'm now having a GoY break! :~))

18 Nov, 2009


YESSS!! 'Golden Cup'....I used to call them 'Golden tongues' because of their shape! LOL. Thanks, Baz and Marie. :-))

Poor Marie - enjoy your break. xx

18 Nov, 2009


Do they still make them? I loved them! And they should bring back cadbury's toffee buttons!
I'm off back to my speech!! :~((
See you tomorrow!

18 Nov, 2009

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