Lawn mowing

It’s early. I’m sitting at my beautiful desk (bit messy) and facing my big computer screen. And thank goodness it faces a blank wall. Because right behind me is what I now call the deer hide.

The French windows onto my little terrace are just the most amazing place to spot wildlife outside.

The deer go past around this time of the morning now – grazing the lower terraces and then making their way to the forest up higher on the mountain.

It’s a mesmerising sight to see them playing – there are four most mornings – and play fighting and generally working their way up the garden.

I did have plans to remove that fence that surrounds the Dry Garden. But for now I’ll leave it up. If they get a taste for shrubs I’m a goner.

I call this the Insanely Busy Season.

No more waking early and lying in the dark reading the news on my phone. It’s up and at ’em.

And right now it’s the battle between the potting shed which needs to be monitored for drying out seedlings, sowing, pricking out and and potting on.

And the last of the winter projects that still aren’t done. (I’m looking at you Garden List – the ambitious plans are slipping.)

And now Spring growth.

I’ve done a few hours of mowing already. And halfway through mowing the rather tall grass in the area behind the main lawn and pool I suddenly stopped.

All this gorgeous grass just going to be bagged up for mulch. Plus using petrol for the mower. Why not put the horses in here instead?

Discuss with my neighbour Jean Daniel. Get the green light. Go and fetch them. Set up the fencing, add an extra layer (a cordon sanitaire) to prevent Ulysse the great escape artist from making a dash for pastures new. And then pick up their manure twice a day while trying not to be trampled with loving forays into the pockets for apples.

I thought I would have them here for a few days to really crop the grass.

But after a day and a bit I gave up and took them back to the larger paddock.

They do crop brilliantly. And they give me wonderful manure to add to the compost heap.

But they are heavy beasts and their hoof prints in the soft soil do cause more damage than I bargained for.

Plus Ulysse loves eating the bark from trees when he’s bored. So as soon as I looked up from flower cutting and saw him having a good go at the mulberry it was time to move.

Adorable as they are I have come to realise that if I want sward and elegance in a lawn, it will be with a petrol mower for now.

And I also realised that I Covet My Neighbour’s Sheep.

Now those are polite lawn mowers. Not too heavy a hoof, constant nibblers so they don’t ravage areas in days. And the manure is smaller and not traffic hazards when you walk daydreaming in the grass.

Mind you Solene’s sheep were a family affair yesterday as this beauty escaped. We mobilised the whole mountain (three families) to catch him.

And Solene very cleverly (and bribing with a bucket of chestnuts) brought him back. But not after we found him one farm over from ours. A good kilometre away from the home paddock.

It’s never a late morning wasted when you are charging about the forest with your mates. But I had left the flower cutting a bit late.

Market day today. And I want to pick up more supplies. And deliver tulips and generally get on with the insane list day.

No time to day dream staring at the wildlife out the window, out we go.