Welcome to the Tsubo-en diary. Thanks for stopping by and reading. If you have any questions feel free to email us or post in the comment sections of one of the posts you'll find here.
     Marijke & Piet.

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Overall measurements to reduce maintenance, continued 2

Acer pseudoplatanus-platanoides The first in this series was: “Less is more”? Overall measurements to reduce maintenance. In September 2015 we started to execute this plan in the left side garden compartment. Later in September we continued in the main garden compartment, with the Acer palmatum "Bloodgood" and the Acer platanoides "Royal Red". This was a quick [...]

Tracks in the snow

After an extreme delay the winter has now commenced.  Last week we got about 20 cm (8 inch) snow. We also had the pleasure to be the coldest spot in the country with -22,9 °C (-9.2F). It’s exciting to find trails in the snow of “wild creature”. While we have no clue what wildlife […]

Birds bathing and drinking during winter

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In summer the “upper lake” on the Kame-jima, “Turtle island”, gives us a lot of joy. Every day, we see a diversity of birds that come to drink and bath in this small pond. The water in the “upper lake” (right) gets continuously replenished and refreshed by a small fountain-pump that gets the water […]

The plague named Blackbirds

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Blackbirds are really, really fond of our garden. And so we used to be fond of Blackbirds. This photo only shows one of the damages the birds do to our garden. Beautiful moss taken out of the joints between the flatstones of our “hidden terrace”. No moss is save in the garden and most […]

Birdlife and near-dead

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In Birdlife in the garden I wrote about life and dead. This female blackbird was lucky. Although it flew against our living room window it eventually survived. It fell on its back on the wooden deck of the veranda after the bang. We heard the bang and where immediately alarmed. We soon found the […]

Nasty insects in buxus (box)

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Insects can cause a number of pests. Here we address two insect specimen that, this year, caused a different type of harm. Honeybees and ants. During the work described in my post Trimming the topiary O-karikomi (buxus) sculpture  the following strange things occurred. Bees, more specifically honeybees are frequently visiting the boxwood all over the […]

Chamaecyparis Lawsonia trimming

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Next to our Cryptomeria Japonica (Lawson’s Cypress) “elegans” stands the Chamaecyparis Lawsonia “white spot”. After I had pruned the Cryptomeria ( post: Cryptomeria Japonica “elegans”, fukinaoshi-pruning ) I pruned the Chamaecyparis. We prune our Chamaecyparis Lawsonia for shape. This pruning is part of a long running fukinaoshi treatment that entails pruning for shape and applies […]

Replenishing the Turtle-island lakes, bird bath

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Topping up or replenishing the Turtle-island lakes in the front garden is a semi-automated task. During these hot summer days, due to evaporation and the dozens of birds (and cats aahhh) drinking and bathing, the water level in the lower reservoir can quickly get too low. Too low, not as such an immediate danger […]

Birdlife in the garden

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“Cosmos, the endless cycle of live and death.” Lao Tzu in Tao Te Ching This week we saw a diversity of high- and low-lights in the life of birds in our garden. Here we give a quick impression of a few. One of our great enjoyments in the garden is a mutual joy, for hundreds […]

Pike attack (Esox lucius, carnivorous fish)

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Today Marijke (my wife) called (yelled) me, in an extremely excited way, to come quickly. Bet you, I came as swift as I could. First came the disappointment. She was not at all exited by anything to do with my person. Instead it was about a really big fish she saw in the waterway […]