Postcard From... A Happy Little Green Patch

This guest post is part of the 2017 Makers Postcard series - find other posts here, and the 2016 series here.

Before you begin to read this, please know I do not live anywhere special. There are no mountains surrounding us, nor do we live in a big exciting city or in a remote forest near a lake. 

We (my boyfriend, our cat and me) live in a suburban area and have a medium size garden, surrounded by other houses with gardens that are far prettier and bigger than ours. 
I want to invite you to our garden. Let’s sit there for a while, shall we? 
It is nothing special. It isn’t big, or well kept nor does it have exotic plants. 
It has weeds I constantly ‘forget’ to pull out, barren patches I still need to plant something in and a dead tree I have yet to remove. 
However, there is one thing that makes our garden special to me; its visitors. If you talk about biodiversity, our garden is the place to be. 

Most of the ground is covered in plants that grow low. It’s the perfect environment for spiders, snails and other creatures to crawl into, because it’s dark and moist. Especially after the rain you can really see what’s living in there. The toads and frogs come out of their hiding place and the snails and worms crawl to their next destination.

We also have a lot of bee- and butterfly friendly plants. Among them is a very big butterfly bush that fills the garden with an amazingly sweet smell and attracts bees and butterflies of all sorts. There are peacock butterflies, red admirals and small whites to admire while they get their nectar from the bush. I can stand there for long periods of time, just tracking their coming and goings. They tend to become very tame as well, so sometimes they even take a rest on my shoulder or head.

The bees like the garden too. There are a variety of honeybees with the occasional bumble bee passing by. They are very gentle and keep the wasps away, which I’m very happy about. No need to fear these bees!

There is one special bee species that I like to watch most, though and that’s the Leafcutter Bee. We have the great honour to have at least two (that I know of) in our garden and they are an absolute joy to watch.

If you watch closely, you can see it resting on the tree
They are tireless workers that do everything by themselves because they are of the solitary variety. Watching them haul those tiny leaves is just too cute. They use them to line their holes so they can protect it and lay their eggs when the time comes.

Bees are such an inspiration for me and they continue to be so. I look forward to them every year when it gets warmer. 

Hotel of Bees Shawl, inspired by Anthony Doerr's book 'All the light we cannot see'
There is also a reason I have not removed the dead tree yet; bugs like ants, woodlice and beetles love it in there and they have built their tiny houses everywhere in it. You can hear them gnawing through the wood if you have a good listen. 

All these little creatures in our garden attract birds too. There is usually a group of crested tits that come first thing in the morning or at sunset. They take their turn, pecking at the dead wood to reveal their delicious contents inside. Unfortunately, they were camera shy so I could not get a good picture. 

We also have blackbirds scouring the grounds, looking for worms and in the Spring or Fall we usually have our own red robin to come visit, but he has yet to show his face this year.

In the Fall, we also have a lot of hedgehogs that stop by, because I always leave the foliage on the ground until Spring. And just a few weeks ago, I saw my first ‘live’ squirrel, which made me squeal of excitement, which in turn, made it run straight out of the garden again. My bad. 

I’m sure that I’ve forgotten to name a lot of creatures that visit, but these are the ones I know of at least. 

I like to sit in a chair, crochet and watch all the animals and insects around me. Listen to the sounds they make. From the buzzing of the bees to birds twittering and crickets chirping late at night. To me it’s a great mindfulness exercise to get grounded again in stressful times, just like crochet helps me relax.

I treasure all the life within our garden and it truly is my little green patch of happiness between all the other houses and gardens in our area. Every season brings new inhabitants and I enjoy almost all of them. (Still not fond of Junebugs and big spiders)

Picking flowers sweater, inspired by the beginning of spring

Crochet is so forgiving in that there are a gazillion ways to make a stitch and manipulate the fabric. Two holes and some puff-stitches become a bee, a few treble clusters become a flower, double crochet fans become cumulus clouds. Replicating nature seems so natural and the ideas I get seem to flow out of me effortlessly when it is inspired by my surroundings.

Whenever there’s that new ‘spark’, whether it’s inspired by something I’ve read, listened to or saw, it almost always has a connection with nature and the creatures that live in it. It’s the best inspiration you can have, because as you have read; it’s all around me and you. I’m sure everyone has a little green patch of happiness. All you’ve got to do is find it.
Christina's little green patch of happiness is in the province of Drenthe in the Netherlands. You can also fin Christina on her blog A Spoonful of Yarn, on InstagramFacebook and Ravelry

If you are taking inspiration from your location this summer, share your photos on Instagram using the hashtag #makerspostcards and tag me @craftsfromthecwtch. 

1 comment

  1. LOVE this, it's winter here in AUstralia and pretty freezing cold even inside the office but thinking of spring and life outside is a lovely thing to do. I love being in my ungroomed garden and listening to the life outside while I craft. I have the pattern for the hotel of bees shawl but have not made it yet. the picking flowers sweater just made my list. thank you for sharing


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