Down The Lane

This morning I wandered through the garden, down Downton Lane and into Roger’s field and back.

View towards patio fro Waterboy

The red Japanese maple is now coming into leaf, and we may soon have to refill the Waterboy’s shell.

Clematis Montana

The clematis Montana, retrained eighteen months ago, now festoons the dead tree;


and different, delicate, tulips are bursting into life.


Dandelions currently claim the lane’s verges,


where, soon, cow parsley will swamp primulas.


On this ivy leaf, I think, is a hoverfly masquerading as a wasp.

Crows and crop fertilising

I exchanged waves with the friendly farmer as, attracting the usual avian entourage,

crop fertilising 1

he drove up and down fertilising his field, with a backdrop of Christchurch Bay.

Downton Lane

The oak trees are producing plumage. In the bottom right of this picture can be seen another amenable gentleman,

Paving and sandPaving

one of the staff of Transform Paving, working on the drive of number 23.

Grass bed

After lunch, I rendered token assistance to The Head Gardener in replenishing and redistributing soil, then cut the grass. The bed here demonstrates the soil rejuvenation process. To the left, clog clay soil has been removed and placed where it doesn’t matter much, then replaced by all-purpose compost. That to the right is, as yet, untreated. Anyone with a better knowledge than mine will recognise a self-seeded mimulus from last year in the left-hand section. They obviously do well there. That is why the wheelbarrow contains more of these plants, to be inserted tomorrow.

Wood pigeon

For the whole time we sat in the rose garden with our pre-dinner Hoegaarden and cabernet sauvignon, a big fat wood pigeon warbled his contribution to our conversation. Or perhaps he was simply calling to his mate.

There was plenty of last night’s menu for us to come back for more this evening.


  1. Not often I’m first in! That hoverfly might have fooled ME, but for the greater-than-lifesize enlargement. I never see what the evolutionary benefit is for an insect to look like a wasp. Perhaps nothing eats wasps (but surely that would result in their population reaching ‘pest’ levels. However much they may alarm us, they’re not at pest numbers).

  2. Every time I see primulas in the wild–some ditch or roadside in England–I think of all the times I’ve bought them in small pots, and how nice it would be to see them, just in any spring field.

      1. They must be related to cowslips: in our [suburban] garden, we have wild stock of both primroses (what Brits call wild primulas, pale yellow; primulas are brightly coloured* primrose cultivars) and cowslips (bright yellow: a favourite of my father, a countryman by upbringing and inclination, who had dug a small patch of wild ones to regrow at home [YEARS before any legal Act forbidding such a practice] and the wild stock has multiplied). I mention it in this context because in our lawn we have a cross between a garden primula and a cowslip, the latter’s form, with primula’s ruby colours.
        * not just yellows

  3. Lovely photography as usual. I am not sure which of the wood pigeon, the hoverfly, the flowers or the oak tree caught my eye the most as they were all equally beautiful and so different. Your eye for beauty is quite remarkable!

    1. It did cross my mind(only fleetingly) that with a little cranberry or redcurrent sauce he would be very like a turkey!

      1. Well, Pauline DID say she liked the woodpigeon shot, so get shooting and cooking…
        (I’ll be round).

  4. The first photograph was my very favorite, holding multiple examoles of pretty, charming flowers. The colors look so dramatic and brighter than usual. Like being at a garden party!
    Derrick, the wood pigeon certainly would be a special treat to listen to, for me! Definitely he is a beauty in my eyes.
    Your evening wines or drinks in the rose garden sound so relaxing.
    The hoverfly was a cool capture, the farmer and the pavement worker were busy as bees. The meal of what we call, “leftovers” when I know it really is Jackie’s “delightful seconds” was amazing, as always.

    1. Examples with a “p” sorry, Derrick. Have I told you I have a cataract and will have surgery in October? I have already had narrow eye glaucoma surgery in both eyes. Giving my “excuses” for poor spelling and clumsy typing! 🙂

      1. Thank you, Derrick. I am happy to write about your beautiful garden and I do appreciate when people take a bit of time, sometimes when they have time, to write more details. Often, the responses are very nice and yet, repetitive.
        Anyway, I know my right eye will be much better in the Fall. I am not whining just explaining. ha ha ha! 🙂 I do think things could be much worse. . .

  5. The man doing the driveway on Number 23 has changed his trousers from one photo to the next. See how closely we scrutinize your postings!

        1. Can’t think what you mean? I once played a cricket match against a West Indian Test player called Keith Boyce. He hit six balls out of the ground on his way to a century in 40 minutes. He was caught out off a skier off my bowling. The poor man standing under it as we all waited for it to come down from the stratosphere, made the catch, then said: ‘Can I change my trousers now?. Little did I know that I would use that joke 50 years later

      1. As it happens, any ‘fear’ effects wouldn’t show against that colour, unless the colour WAS the ‘fear’ effect.

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