A Spring Day in Winter!

In Animals, Gardening on January 23, 2012 at 5:45 pm

Officially it is still Winter but the weather has it’s own mind. Today was Springlike in the valley. Just beautiful! I spent late morning pruning last years growth, now dead and brown, from the perennials on the bed by the Birch tree. I leave it over Winter so the birds can feast on any seeds. The birds kept me entertained as I worked,  lots of them singing and chirping in the Birch tree. So many Tits and Chaffinches, and a few Goldfinches too. Can you spot the little Blue Tit in the Birch Tree?

It’s amazing how much early growth there’s been this year, 23rd January today and Sweet Cicely is already flowering.

Arum Lily has put on a lot of growth and

Escallonia is looking lush and healthy. Last year it came through the Winter but looked battered and bruised.

In the afternoon Lisa the Equine Dentist came to look at Daphne’s teeth. Donkeys teeth need to be checked anually especially as they get older. Daphne is about 22 now. Far back in the Donkey’s jaw are the molars, these often give trouble because the upper jaw is wider than the lower jaw, the grinding movement is from side to side, so the teeth on the outer edges of the upper jaw and the inner edges of the lower do not get any wear. This in time leads to sharp points developing which will cause discomfort for the animal. The dentist uses a rasp, which is like a giant file, to rectify the problem.

Daphne did’nt need her teeth rasped today but she did have a loose tooth which Lisa extracted very quickly. Loose teeth can be sore and impede grazing so they do need to be checked by an expert.

And there it is, the troublesome tooth, gone! Daphne did’nt seem a bit bothered and returned to grazing as soon as she was back in the field.

  1. I can’t believe that’s a tooth! It looks like a half-eaten plum!

  2. O what a lovely blog..thanks to Kevin for nominating you so I could find you….great photos too…Gave me a taste of Ireland and gardening life there. thank you.

  3. […] been spectacular weather here yet again. I follow this garden blog out of Ireland, called Arigna Gardener, and it’s interesting to follow Bridget’s accounts of similar weather patterns […]

  4. What a beautiful day it must have been! Those sweet little birds were celebrating and I could sense your donkey saying “thank you, thank you” as he frolicked out into the pasture.

  5. Well that’s really put me off my next dental appointment. At least Daphne didn’t know what was coming, and I bet she feels a lot better now. Thanks for visiting my blog, by the way.

  6. Wow, your lovely donkey didn’t seem to care at all about the dentist ripping out that rotten tooth. What a well mannered donkey. I did spy the cute little Blue Tit in the tree as soon as I looked at the photo. Lovely little thing.

  7. Nice blog! Will follow with interest.

  8. Yikes! I would hate for a dentist to come at me with tools that look like that. I don’t know who was braver, the donkey or the dentist, but I guess it was just another day in their world!

  9. That looks painful. Was she given anesthesia?

  10. How nice it is to be living in a country like yours, where animals are treated well like humans. But i hope they use anesthetics for them too.

  11. We are having spring like weather too, it feels really nice. I didn’t know donkey’s teeth needed so much care, I am glad Daphne is feeling better.

  12. Poor thing! We have also had spring-like days. I don’t know if a winter storm is waiting in the wings or we will just slowly move into spring.

  13. Makes me wench just looking at that tooth.

  14. Things are racing away in my garden. It is so mild and the birds are all singing away. It is so lovely to hear them again singing in the trees. I love birdsong and don’t like it when they have that lull. Oh that dentist stuff should have come with a warning though. I am a complete wuss when it comes to stuff like that and came over all funny!!!

  15. Aw, poor Daphne. Do you know at what age donkies have to have their teeth looked at? Ours are about 5 and 6 years old and have never had a dentist look at them.

    • Don’t really know when you should start but I think it’s more of a problem as they get older. A telltale sign is if you see them dropping food from their mouths or if they lose weight for no reason. Losing weight can mean they are not grazing as efficiently.

  16. Bridget,

    We have Sweet Cicely in our woods as well, but it grows mostly in the shade. I would not even think it would be anything but sleeping right now. Daphne really did well today. That dentist must have a tough job.

  17. Who’da thought that teeth extraction (even of that magnitude) would be a rivetting read?

  18. The weather is a tease around here in Boston, MA. We seem to alternate between cold, snowing and warm/spring (today is in the 50s F and sunny.) But not much growth here, still seeing your photos gives me home that it may come to our shores as well….


  19. Wow, wonder how many times the Donkey Dentist has been kicked/bitten/generally beaten up by a patient?!

  20. Brave woman! No latex gloves?

  21. Oops missed copying the first part of my comment: This Springlike weather is hard to take don’t you think? It’s making me want to start garden projects now but it’s way too early for those – or is it 😉

  22. Yep, I spotted the Blue tit sounds like you’ve a good population of birds in your garden – maybe your Dunnocks are hiding 🙂

  23. I haven’t seen any flowers on my sweet cicely but I have had two or three roses all the way through the winter. Chilly tonight though! Dear Donkey, lucky she has a dentist to come and do what needs to be done 🙂 The little birds were rushing about here this morning too, lots of great and blue tits gearing up for nest box hunts and courting. I want to yell, hang on a bit, but they are convinced that it’s Spring.

  24. how neat, I love birds, but Daphne is stealing the show in that post 😉 Glad she was ok having her tooth pulled, what a good donkey gurl!

  25. It has been warm here, too, and am a little concerned about plants beginning their Spring growth when we are still apt to have freezes. We are pruning the new growth for now, and hoping for the best. 🙂

  26. So glad it was an easy extraction. Poor dear. Teeth can be such a bother.

  27. It has been lovely here too but still very cold. Poor old Donkey – I wish it was that easy to have a tooth removed for humans.

  28. How fasinating! I’ve never seen a dentist like this before!

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