Yesterday was the last day of September and, as with most of September, it was a lovely sunny day. I made a point of sitting out in the garden to feel the warmth of the sun on my face.
A Pied Wagtail sat on a nearby chimney and called.
A Peacock butterfly whizzed past but with no whizzing sound.
House Martins, just a few, were still overhead.
But the main wildlife sensation to caress the senses was the hum of insects on the ivy. If I closed my eyes and let myself drift with the sound it was easy to doze for a while.
There were some flies but the hum came mostly from what I believe were Honey Bees. Scores of them.
It’s always like this on early autumn days when the ivy is in flower and the sun is out. I like these moments. I like the ivy. I like the bees. At times like this – I like the whole world.
But there is a question that I must pose to you all-round naturalists, please. When is the best time to cut back my ivy – it is overdue, I think. I realise that there may be hibernating butterflies (Brimstones?) that use the ivy later in the season (or might they be there now, already?), and that there will be pupae of Holly Blues there too (is that right?). And, there are probably all sorts of other interesting invertebrates snuggling away within the ivy’s shelter.
I’m not cutting it all down, heaven forefend!, but I do need to get it a bit under control. So the question is, ‘When is the best time to cut back my ivy to do the least damage to the ivy and the wildlife that may be using it?’.
PS I really don’t mind if you tell me to leave it for 11 months – I’m not that keen – but you would have to make up a convincing reason as well please.
PPS While dozing I realised that it was exactly a year since I submitted the manuscript, on time and on length, of A Message from Martha to my publisher.[registration_form]