Monday, January 16, 2012

Avian Dreams

In the center of the above photo you will notice a tiny little garden folly.  It was built originally as the outdoor home for our last doggie, Tukk, our beautiful Siberian Husky who loved being outside.

He has been gone for a while, and before the holidays, I came across a gorgeous book, while shopping our Indigo book store for Christmas gifts, The Birding Life, written by Carol Sheehan and Kathryn Precourt.
It was while perusing this gorgeous book, that I finally realized what Tukk's little home could become!

I had it built out of old tin ceiling tiles, which were the perfect shade of green, and cedar lumber which was painted the same colour and would blend in with the surrounding woods. Tukk, loved his new home, and went inside as soon as we put it in the garden, his doggie castle!

I have always had an affinity to avian related objects, besides the winged creatures themselves, bird houses, aviaries and especially bird coops have always caught my eye, the dovecote being my favourite. Above, you can see my vintage aviary, covered in clematis Huldine, a gorgeous all white summer blooming one.

Many species of birds are very plentiful in our woods, and I really love waking up spring and summer mornings to the sweet sound of chirping and singing going on outdoors all around me.  It is truly sublime, and I can't think of a better alarm clock....

Here again, in the background, left, you get a peek of the little abode in the garden in early Spring.

Another peek in the garden, at a small, vintage birdcage, sitting on a filigree iron bench.
The flowers were a mock up for a wedding I was working on at the time of this photo.

Back to my story.....below you can see the fabulous and stunning " coop castle " designed by Nancy McCabe, garden designer extrordinaire, for a garden in the Berkshires. When I read this story, I began to dream about my white doves housed in a re purposed aviary in our garden.....

 Please excuse the poor photo quality, but you get the picture!  Beautiful....

 The birds are Saudi Arabian frillback pigeons, but I would be content with white doves, or just softly cooing morning doves....

The bird feeder is reminiscent of blue Chinese export dining on fine china!

.... the very regal looking birds, which are let out of the coop once a day...
They are not good flyers and do not venture far from their home.

 .....what I really wanted to learn, was more about Nancy McCabe and her gardening philosophy and style.
There is much written about her, and she is a renowned garden designer.

Dovecotes, besides being things of beauty, have long played a role in gardening history, according to McCabe. They were symbols of status and power in the Middle Ages, and of course, more importantly of practicality. Pigeons and doves were an important food source, not to mention excellent manure for fertilizing gardens.

I am thinking to incorporate Tukk's little home into a dovecote some day for my own garden, perhaps the cupola...sitting atop a small, rustic looking design, which would blend into our surroundings. Do doves like the woodland garden, as much as I do??  What will Mr. M. think??? Research coming up....  Hmmmmm....

At the moment, I will have to be content dreaming and thinking about how I would

work one into my plans for Acorn Lane...another cup of pursue avian dreams....

What started it all....The Birding Life
A Passion for Birds at Home and Afield
Clarkson Potter


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