Fairy houses and flowers.

It’s hard not to step on asparagus stalks when they are barely showing above the mulch like this one. Today I tromped on one that was much taller; I was trying to get a good picture of the irises. It’s the time of year when I need to make a point of going out to the asparagus bed knife in hand at least every other day, and not ignore them as I walk up to the front door.

Every day there has been some special garden-related surprise, including rain, which in turn brings out more sprouts and flower surprises.

This month my neighbors thinned some limbs of the tall Canary Island Pine that hang over their side of the fence — most of the biomass of the tree is on their side — and I am getting a little more sunlight into the back garden, without having to cut down my only tree.

My beloved pale yellow California poppies seem to be changing to orange as they reseed themselves year by year. I’m trying to pull out a lot of the orange ones, but I think it’s a losing battle. This is the only patch of yellow ones right now.

A week ago I went to the coast and updated my Sea Log page. (I fixed it to receive comments now.) One thing I liked about that visit was watching the little shore birds that I think are Sanderlings. I’m showing you this picture because it shows their size compared to sea gulls.

This week was so busy with other things, I couldn’t get away to the coast, but the cold temperatures out there might have kept me away in any case. The sun will shine and warm things up everywhere next week, so I hope to go again.

The day after my last excursion to the beach, I was oddly inspired to walk in my neighborhood. For the last year I had done that very little, choosing rather to vegetate between beach trips. This time I took a path to the east that I hadn’t been on in years; it follows the creek as the stream gets narrower, and the walkway used to come to a dead end pretty quickly. But now, I discovered that it connects with a new housing development and paved sidewalks.

As I was trying to take a picture of a pair of shy Mallards, I spied a little toy house on the other side of the water. Then another upstream, and another… altogether there were dozens of woodsy houses and scenes with gnomes, fairies and toadstools that someone had put a lot of work into. I am going to show you a sample.

A few like this one with the red door were built against trees, and some were nestled into the banks, mostly on the far side where I couldn’t easily go. One was built on a stump in the middle of the stream. They all looked a bit weathered, which made me wonder how they didn’t get washed away in winter storms. I guess it’s a sign of how little precipitation we got this season.

A gnome in a tree swing, fairies having a tea party out of doors… My very favorite was this “Fairy House Laundry” with its sign by the door assuring customers that when treated at their establishment, “Stains magically vanish.”

Another fun thing about my walk was meeting two strangers who were happy to talk to me, like in the old days. Though I didn’t have time to extend my outing just then, it appears that with the add-on to the old path, I could walk for miles toward the hills. Even if the “adventure” would mostly take me through a new subdivision of houses, the novelty of it appeals and I want to do it soon.

Back to the greenhouse, here are a couple of the sprouts I’m seeing:

The bottom one is nasturtiums. Last time I looked the summer squash and the calendulas were coming up, too. And now that we are in March, my greenhouse is getting a little sunshine in the mornings and afternoons. When I go inside, it always feels cozy the way seeds would like.

Last but not least, the Green Beauty snow peas are living up to their reputation for being big. I’ve picked three so far and they are over 5″ long, so I am very pleased. That “blushing” you might notice is natural to their personality. Though the calendar doesn’t say so quite yet, I know that Spring has arrived.

16 thoughts on “Fairy houses and flowers.

  1. Your Irises are such a lovely dark shade of purple.

    And you have fresh Asparagus and even a few sugar peas!!!

    The fairy/gnome homes are cute. Makes me want to make some too.

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  2. What a delightful read: beautiful irises; I have never grown asparagus so am pleased to see the spikes come up; it is good to see your seedlings; I am glad you found an interesting extension to the path you followed; and find those little fairy houses intriguing – what fun!

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  3. Those fairy houses in the forest remind me so much of The Borrowers, by Mary Norton. Did you ever read that to your children? Here in my town, an anonymous artist has made lots of tiny little reproduction Georgian and Victorian front doors and attached them at pavement level to matching old buildings. I love that people wake up one day and think – I will make a fairy village. Or a tiny door. It makes life so magical:)

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  4. What a delightful post to read on this ‘first day of spring’. I loved the fairy houses, they are amazing and someone went to a lot of work. Have a lovely weekend ~ FlowerLady

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  5. Isn’t that first asparagus a delight? I have one lonely spear too. 38 degrees last night. Spring is delaying again.

    Those gnome/fairy villages are popular these days, I think. That is charming! You’ll have to keep us posted on any new additions. I’m envious of your beach trips, but I have no excuse — I should go to, to my own ocean over here 🙂

    It’s that happy time of year to anticipate seedlings. Yours are looking cheery!

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  6.     those little fairy houses are cute.  when I was a small child I liked the idea of fairies and leprechauns.

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  7. The fairy homes are so beautiful and fun! And well done on the garden. I have my nastutium seeds but have yet to dare plant anything, although the daffodils are beginning to sprout, as is my garlic, or at least that the squirrel didn’t dig out! I love your poppies and irises. I’m hoping to buy some pansies on Monday when we go to to the flower market. I hope they have them!

    Happy week!

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  8. LOL! Those fairy houses put a big smile on my face! Have people been doing that everywhere or just in your neck of the wood? This is the first time I see them and know about them, from you. Thanks for sharing your pictures. Mallards, we have lots, even in the cold winter, and swans. But this is the first time such miniatures come to my knowledge. Also, makes me think of Frodo’s home, the hobbit. 🙂

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  9. Such produce in your garden! It must be very satisfying to go out and harvest your very own ingredients in such abundance. I feel all fancy when I can go out and pick a few strawberries! I do adore those fairy houses. I’m sure it gave more joy in the creation even than in the finding. I wonder was it the same for God?

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  10. Your irises are so pretty. I love the color. I think we are all fascinated by the little fairy/gnome houses. I do have the loveliest spot for one on a wee island at pond’s edge. I should think you’ll go walking that way again just to have another look.

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  11. Thank you for sharing all of this. I yearn to grow things again, but feel like it’s such a monumental task right now. Why, I don’t know. Maybe I’m afraid I won’t follow through and everything will die. Yeah, probably that. You’re certainly inspirational. This last year of isolation has really messed with me. Must push myself out of my cocoon. The fairy communities are so sweet! What a lovely discovery!

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  12. Your asparagus spears had me googling how they are grown and realizing that my aunt had a bed of them in their frilly ferny phase.

    What a delight to discover the fairy homes, unique and somewhat remote. That adorable clothesline!

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    1. Where I live the asparagus are in their frilly phase for at least six months, and I got weary of it at the end, only because my beds are in the middle of my front yard, and the mass of fronds got huge and messy before turning yellow and signaling that I could cut them down.

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