Today’s guest picture comes from Mary Jo in Manitoba. She really does have a scientific rain gauge and she was very pleased to find it had some rain in it, as they too have been suffering from a drought.
We had a gentle spot or two of rain today but once again it was not enough to do the watering job for us.
We haven’t been suffering from the heat wave that has been hitting the south but at 22°C on a cloudy day, it was still unusually warm.
All the same, Mrs Tootlepedal made the most of our relatively cool weather by working furiously all morning in the garden. Hedges were trimmed…
…and plants were uprooted to make space. I did a lot of shredding and then seeing that the mound of material was going to overwhelm Compost Bin A, I turned the contents of Bin A into Bin B, which luckily was empty. By lunchtime, Bin A was half full again.
I also sieved some of Bin D to make room at the far end of the composting process. The results were soon back on a flower bed.
The lawns are surviving much better than I thought that they would and I was able to mow the middle lawn. I have been keeping the mower blades quite high but the faint and very occasional mists of drizzle must be to the liking of the grass as I took several boxes of cuttings to add to the compost.
The result was not too bad under the circumstances.
Mrs Tootlepedal trimmed the edges later on.
There is a bit less colour in the flower bed at the far end of the lawn than Mrs Tootlepedal had planned because one of the sets of plants turns out to be biennials. She tells me that she should have read the catalogue more carefully but they will doubtless make a good show next year.
There are white butterflies all over the garden and one settled on a lobelia beside the new bench while I was having a cup of coffee with the gardener.
There are two dahlias out now and the other plants are looking quite healthy so there should be more soon.
More poppies appear every day and we greet them with a cry of “Better late than never.”
The brown trim on the calendulas is very striking and I turned a flower over today to show what it would look like if I was lying flat on the ground underneath it.
Different bumble bees were visiting the stachys.
I am always happy when a new clematis comes out. This one is on the metal fence along the edge of the vegetable garden.
A second perennial wallflower has appeared in the new bed.
And sadly, the elegant yellow lilies are fading slightly as they come to the end of the flowering season.
I put the bird spotting camera up over lunchtime and enjoyed chaffinches approaching the feeder.
A little while later, Mrs Tootlepedal looked up and said, “There are greenfinches everywhere.”
This was true.
Chaffinches hovered around but they didn’t get a look in.
…and even the greenfinches found maintaining a seat at the table was hard work.
Some made a rather huffy exit.
In the afternoon, the joiners came back and did useful work on keeping the house in good condition.
It started to drizzle and the wind was quite vigorous so I abandoned thoughts of a walk or a cycle and put a week of the newspaper index into the Archive Group database. I have still got about six weeks waiting to be entered so it will have to rain a lot more if I am to catch up.
I did get out into the garden for other walks round in the afternoon.
A blackbird is never far away wherever you are.
This one was on the bench under the walnut tree watching me trying and failing to get a good picture of bees on the privet flowers.
I noticed that the ligularia needed watering and took a good look at it once I had done the job.
The late afternoon and evening were spent tootling. First my flute pupil Luke came and we worked on smooth playing and controlled breathing. Then, after tea, I went off to try to put some of my own advice into practice while playing trios with Isabel and Mike.
We played three trios, all by G P Telemann and that guaranteed us a most enjoyable time.
When I got back, a good day was rounded off by some very tasty courgette fritters that Mrs Tootlepedal had made while I was out.
The flying bird of the day is one of the chaffinches visiting the feeder before the greenfinches came.