I think this tree is a gray birch, that got itself next to the garage foundation. Then I neglected getting rid of it, so it shot branches up above the roof-line. When I cut it back one branch took off a piece of flashing. But I feel sorry for the tree, so I trim it back as a shrub and let it live. This year it has all these galls on the leaves, that seem to grow into this strange plant/insect object. You can see some in the background that are stretching.
The lilies of the valley are pretty this year, since I raked their bed out for them, and added some fortified potting soil. Its a difficult spot to design, because in the winter the oaks shed masses of leaves, and the bed gets heavily piled; then in the spring the daffodils have to run their course, before there’s room for the next thing. This year I added the dwarf spruce, and a climbing trellis.
In the local squirrel gene pool, is this tendency towards red tails. So far this year, only a Cooper’s hawk, seen in pursuit of an unknown bird, so the squirrels are fat and frollicking. I have a whole flock of morning doves, which seem to be the bird-hunting hawk’s favorite prey.
In the springtime, the oaks drop so many catkins I can sweep them up and use them for mulch. Catkins are high-protein (it seems, as I learned from looking it up, you can eat them if you like…something to remember if you’re ever lost in the wilderness at the right season), and so it takes little time for them to decompose in the garden.
Here’s a good way to hatch out your hens and chickens, when you want to spread them around.