Swan song

Today’s guest picture is another from Venetia’s visit to Kew.  As well as dragons, she saw this interesting creature.  It is called Gnomus (but I don’t gnow why).

kew creature

The joiners having finished their work, the painter came today and the front of the house is on its way to looking well cared for.  A spanner was cast into the smooth running of the refurbishment when the painter discovered a wasps’ nest in one of the dormers that he was about to paint.

We did consider shinning up two ladders on to the roof in the quiet of the twilight and doing what needed to be done but due consideration of the age of the potential ladder climbers led us to calling out an expert from Carlisle who will come tomorrow.

While the painter was painting, I was wandering around the garden and my attention was directed to this flower….

cosmos

…by Mrs Tootlepedal.  It may not look much but if all goes well it is just the first of dozens and dozens of cosmos which will brighten the August garden.

Mrs Tootlepedal also pointed out that there are in fact five zinnias.  Here is the fifth columnist.

fifth zinnia

The verbascum flowers have nearly climbed to the top of their spires…

verbascum spike

…and I will miss them when they are gone.

moth mullein flower

New dahlias are appearing at the rate of one a day and this was today’s arrival.

dahlia

It was a beautiful day, sunny nearly all day but oddly enough, not too hot.

Almost as cheerful as the sunshine was a clump of nasturtiums…

nasturtiums

…and another bright sunflower.

cheerful sunflower

The sunflowers are being a bit contrary and instead of turning their faces to the sun and our garden, they are mostly turning their backs on us and peering over our neighbour’s fence.

There were more white butterflies all over the place.

white butterfly on flower

And bees too.

bumble bees

I went in for coffee and then did a little shopping.

When I got back, I took the opportunity to mow both the middle and front lawns which are confounding me by growing more grass and if anything, getting greener in spite of the lack of meaningful rain.  We are getting a light dew in the morning which may be helping.

And of course, I had another look round when I had finished.

The melancholy thistle shouldn’t be lonely next year.

melancholy thistle seed ead

And the hostas were playing host to yet more bees.

bee on hosta

The new buddleia had attracted a butterfly but sadly it was just another white one.

white butterfly on buddleia

I made some green soup for lunch with courgettes, spinach and broad beans (with a good quantity of garlic too) and it turned out very well.  I am determined to eat as much of our own veg as I can this year.

After lunch, we were detained by a very exciting stage of the Tour de France and then, inspired by the heroes of the Pyrenees, I put on my cycling gear…

…but not until I had had another walk round the garden.

This time there was a peacock butterfly on the buddleia….

peacock butterfly

…but it stuck to sunning itself on a leaf and wouldn’t come onto a flower.

I turned my attention to a very decorative dicentra which Mrs Tootlepedal recently purchased in Dumfries.

dicentra

In the end, I got my bike out and went round my usual 20 mile Canonbie circuit.  It was still sunny but still not too hot and with a light wind, conditions were delightful.

Kerr

It was quite late on the day and we had some singing to do at the Common Riding Concert so I didn’t stop too often but I couldn’t resist being looked down upon by two cows.

cows on a hill

When I got back, the verbascum was showing that even when it has finished flowering, it will still be catching the evening sunlight and adding interest to the back bed.

verbascum in evening

We went off to sing a couple of songs for the finale of the concert in the Buccleuch Centre. As our church organist Henry had arranged the programme, it was not surprising that he had found a place for his choir in it.  A good number of members turned up and we sang well.

That will be our last choir singing until the next sessions start in September.  It was a good way to finish.

No flying bird of the day today as the painter proved a deterrent to visiting the feeder.  A flying visit from the sparrowhawk may not have encouraged the small birds either.

As a result, I have turned to flowers of the day and these are they:

cornflower and calendula

 

 

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

19 thoughts on “Swan song

  1. Sorry about the wasp’s nest, good to get an expert to deal with it. Your garden is so colourful and I particularly enjoyed the photograph of ‘the flower of the day’.

  2. Our little outdoor menage was disturbed today by that red fox that comes around now and again. I yelled at it, and hope that the very few feathers I found indicate that some mourning dove got away with only a stern warning–

  3. I don’t see how you could go wrong eating vegetables grown in that great compost. Everyone should be so lucky,
    We’re having a banner year when it comes to wasps and their nests. I’d rather let someone else deal with it too.
    Beautiful dahlia and odd sunflower. I’ve never heard of one doing that. They will usually follow the sun even on a cloudy day.

    1. We have been largely untroubled by wasps over the past couple of years and would probably not have noticed these if they weren’t exactly where the painter was trying to paint.

  4. You haven’t mentioned having to deal with the moss in the lawn of late, could it be that this warm, dry summer has actually been good for the lawn?

    I do know that the garden is looking in tip top shape this year, it seems that each new flower is trying to outshine the one that it’s replacing.

    1. I am hoping that the moss will have suffered a setback but it is very hardy stuff and I am quite prepared for it to return in force when the cool wet weather arrives.

  5. The wasps nest: can’t you leave it be? It had obviously not caused any bother, as you were not even aware of its existence. Also, it is at the front of your house, so should not disturb you. They only use them once, then they will be gone.

    I really hope you will think twice about killing them all, for what reason …?

  6. That lawn is very obliging to stay green despite the lack of moisture. I think the flower of the day is certainly is a lovely substitute.

  7. One after another your flowers get better, brighter and even more beautiful…it’s a joy to see them all. I think your sunflowers are just being nosy! Love the aloof cow too! Great guest photo!

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