Friday, 28 August 2009

A Catch-up

This is a catch-up posting on some of the things in the garden earlier in August. Sensibly, most of the insects have stayed hidden from the cold, damp breezy yuck that is our British August.




Chinese Balloon Flower

One exception to the insect dearth has been the large number of wasps and honey bees. The former is nothing unusual as we do have years of plenty every now and then. But Honey Bees have become so rare around here now as to be noticeable. This year they have flocked to the Buddleia and the Marjoram; I wonder if someone locally has a hive?

This is the hoverfly Volucella pellucens. The second photo shows it hovering.

“Look out! There’s a cat about.

Goldfinches on the niger seed feeder. (Taken through the window – hence the haziness.)

Sorry Helen, haven’t had time to check which grass this is. Perhaps you know off hand but if not I’ll probably post a comment with its name at some stage.

A frog in one of the ponds.

I took a lot more flower photos later in the month so I’ll post them another day.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Back in the Garden

I left home on 1st May and returned on 28th July. Constant rainfall and other commitments meant it was 30th July before I got out into the garden. In just three months it has almost gone wild. The wild flower border seems to have moved from the back garden to the front!

One of the wild flowers that has come up in the normal borders is Knapweed. I have never managed to grow it in the wild flower garden and now it pops up in among the garden flowers. At least it is one of the more welcome ‘weeds’.

Teasel also crop up in some unexpected places when the Goldfinches don’t manage to eat all the seeds. But, like the Knapweed, they are welcome invaders providing food for insects as well as birds.

The Japanese Anemones are reliable and lengthy flowerers.

A Speckled Wood and a Large White were the first butterflies I saw during the brief patch of sunshine.

Field Scabious or Pin-cushion Flower is one of my favourite wild flowers in the garden. I bought some this year and they seem to have done well.

Jo got some red Geraniums for the kitchen window box and they have done really well.

The Grass Garden is buried in Nettles, Willowherbs, Welsh Poppies and Self-heal. Weeding it and cutting back the hedges around it will be one of my first priorities.

There are lots of yellow Welsh Poppies around the garden and some orange Californian Poppies. I love their tissue paper petals.

Mallow petals also have that thin papery appearance.

Most of the lilies are over but this one was only planted this year and has flowered later than the others.

I haven’t had much luck keeping Dahlias from one year rto the next but I hope I succeed with this one which was planted earlier this year.

This is another wild flower I planted - Mullein.

The Queen Elizabeth Rose has done well despite the lack of fertilizer.

The mice dug up most of the Freesia bulbs this Spring but this is one they missed.

This beautiful Calla Lily seems to have managed well despite the three months of neglect. Jo and Richard did some watering of the garden when I first went away but God (or Darwin – or both) took over the job after a while and has kept it up ever since.