It Had Been Got At


This morning was overcast, very humid, and oppressive, presaging the rain that would barely dribble in this afternoon. My reluctant effort was to cut off a few dead tree branches that had been twisted by the wind, but not actually snapped off; and to wage continued war on the invading brambles along the back drive.

Later, the sun emerged, but the humidity had not declined, so I just took some photographs.

Petunias 1Petunias 2

Petunias were among those blooms that required a certain amount of dead-heading before I could make a close-up page without offending The Head Gardener’s beady eye.

Rose Emma Hamilton

Roses Emma Hamilton

Rose Hot Choco;ate

and Hot Chocolate are having another flush.

Meadow Brow butterfly on rudbeckia 1Meadow Brown butterfly on rudbeckia 2

I think the butterfly on these rudbeckias is a Meadow Brown.

Greenfinch fledgeling 1

The rustling sound of a scurrying creature outside the back door alerted me to the presence of this fledgling greenfinch.

Greenfinch fledgeling 2

Looking back forlornly and giving up an attempt to hide behind the can it turned around

Greenfinch fledgeling 3

and made for the closed kitchen door.

TheΒ wispy, tufted, Mohican hairstyle was reminiscent of the starling chicks emerging from our woodwork in June last year, but the lack of plumage around its head and neck suggested that it had been got at. Ejected from the nest, perhaps? Or maybe necking with the neighbours’ cat?

Whichever it was, I went inside to discuss remedial measures with Jackie. By this time the poor little creature was cowering on the doorstep. I couldn’t open the door without giving the bird another bash, so I walked round to the front door and Jackie opened the stable door round the other side of the kitchen. By this time our visitor had disappeared. We hope it survives.

This evening we dined on our second helpings of Mr Chatty Man Chan’s fare, followed by lemon tart and vanilla ice cream. Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank Old Crafty Hen.


  1. I think you have brought “joie de vivire” to a whole new, elegant and genuine level. Thank you for allowing me to catch a glimpse of it. Peace, Harlon

  2. Hot Chocolate — gorgeous blush! Soon, cold weather will be upon us, and hot cocoa will definitely be on my mind, as well.

    I do enjoy your stories in pictures… Good luck, little Mohican chick!

  3. Like you, I just took a few photographs yesterday.

    The beady ‘eyes’ of the butterfly and the battered bird were looking at you too πŸ™‚

  4. You are really honing your technique with depth of field and clarity with your new camera. Those shots are divine. Not so the poor little finch, who looks like a poor motherless urchin.

  5. Hot Chocolate, wow! And your beautiful butterfly/moth. I bet the little bird got a talking to. It’s amazing how early some of them come from the nest. Its little Mohawk haircut was endearing…

  6. Aw, I am passing on commenting on your lovely flowers because I am so thinking of that little bird. I am hoping the disappearance means he flew off to gather strength. Don’t they just tug at your heart?

  7. Beautiful flowers. So sorry about the fledgling. By the look of the size of its wings, it can’t have flown out of the nest, so must have either fallen out or been pushed out by a sibling. As for its head, very young birds are pretty bald, but there is a disease that many small birds get (I’ve forgotten the name of it) that nake them lose head feathers. I hope it hopped to safety, but it’s unlikely it’ll survive unless its parent finds it. πŸ™

  8. My petunia blooms–after being happily around most of summer– were nibbled and gnawed by something which I never saw. The stems do not look hearty anymore.:( I like the eyes on the butterfly….and the uncertain bird’s saga.

  9. What a treat your photography! My petunias are all dead by now with the summer heat, impossible to keep them safe outside. How sad for the green finch. I hope the little one will find safety somewhere.

      1. I actually wondered about that possibility but put it aside as wishful thinking πŸ˜€ . Thank you a million times for that. The head gardener and you truly deserve that resourcing garden of yours. Hopefully no real harm will ever come to it despite small winds here and there πŸ™‚

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