…and be amazed! Yes two posts in one day and then not another for months 🙂
A few weeks ago DH & I took photographs of some of the spring flowers in our garden and I promised Leslie I’d put them on my blog, I never seem to have got around to it even though Leslie has dropped ruddy great hints! Sorry Leslie, hope the wait was worth it.
There are several large drifts of these around the garden, yes we do have yellow ones too. At the last count we had around 28 different daffodils and in large quantities in the garden; I chose so many different ones as these were the first flowers to open for cutting, when we used to sell cut flowers then the daffodils were very useful. I would cut hundreds every week and make up bunches of them with added greenery. We had daffodils from second week of March through to the beginning of May – of course that all depended on the weather and this year the daffodils, along with all the spring flowers, went over very quickly. The unseasonably warm spring brought the flowers on quickly and most spring flowers are more used to a cooler, damper climate consequently the flowering time was shortened.
Our next stalwarts for cut flowers were the tulips; I love tulips in their various colours and shapes except for the double-flowered varieties!
Crown Imperials are majestic plants, they push themselves through the soil as early as possible. The leaves and bulbs have a very distinctive smell, difficult to describe although some garden writers say the plants smell “foxy” well all I can to say to that is that those writers have never experienced the smell foxes leave behind! The plants flower at around 30 inches tall, large downward facing bells with a crown or tuft of leaves; we have yellow and orange flowering ones.
There is a mixture here! At the back is a heavenly smelling viburnum shrub – balls of white flowers tinged with pink, nearby is another shrub called spiraea and in front are more tulips with the remainder of the hyacinths that have just finished flowering. This little corner is close to a path so we enjoyed all the lovely scents as we walked along here.
Set in the middle of one of the lawned areas this stone trough, planted up with thymes and a small rose, acts as a traffic island when the grandchildren come over to play! The children whizz down the bank above the trough on their tricycles and go either side of the trough – great fun!
Doesn’t this mass planting look cheerful? These plants are called Leopards Bane, so called as they are supposed to deter leopards and they must work as I’ve never seen a leopard in the garden!
The first clematis to flower in this garden, it grows up the west side of the house wall through a rose and also twines itself around a hydrangea. Such a beautiful blue flower.
Can’t believe how early the apple blossom was this year, usually it is just thinking of opening whereas this year it has now finished! This is a beautiful tree with deep red leaves, dark pink flowers and produces prodigious amounts of small red apples. I have in the past made crab apple jelly with the fruit of this tree and delicious it is too. Behind this tree are two other apple trees – a cooker and an eater.
Liam and Dylan after whizzing down the bank, we then have to haul Dylan out of the trailer, where he is firmly wedged, so that Liam can push the whole ensemble back up the bank where Dylan is reinstated and off they go again! The trike and trailer are not a pair – the trike is an old one that permanently resides here for the children’s use and the trailer is brought along when Liam and Dylan come visiting, the trailer is then wired to the trike!
Dylan has gone to bed so Liam is indulging in some art work 🙂
The brimstone butterfly is one of the first butterflies to come out hibernation and one of the most difficult to photograph as it always closes its wings on alighting to imitate a leaf. This picture doesn’t do it any justice as it is a beautiful sulphur yellow – hence its name. Well the male is a beautiful sulphur yellow, the female is much less paler in colour but they both have red spots on their underwings.
The following pic doesn’t look much but is very interesting – well we found it very interesting!! It was something we had never seen before.
We were sat out in the garden enjoying a cup of tea, the sunshine and the birdsong when DH noticed some long slim insects flying past and seemingly to land on a patch of ground nearby. He went for a closer look to see what the insects were and what they were doing; the long slim insects turned out to be a small bee, about the size of your small finger’s nail carrying these dead stems. Some of those stems measured 3 inches; the little bee then wove the stems in and around others already in place. Absolutely fascinating to watch and something we had never witnessed before. At first we thought it was more than one bee and that they were putting a cover over the nest site but it transpired that it was only one bee and that once finished the bee disappeared. We can only think that it was a solitary bee that had laid an egg or eggs below the soil surface and was covering the area against weather and possibly predators. We have other solitary bees that make small holes in the soil and these are usually recognised by a small pyramid of soil with a tiny hole in the top; the leaf cutter bee, another solitary, cuts out semi circles of leaves, makes a tube out of the cut leaf and stuffs these into holes – bottom of flowers pots is a good place – then lays eggs and puts in a food supply and closes up the entrance of the tubes. Isn’t nature marvellous?
Hope I haven’t bored you all rigid! xx