A Harsh Day’s Light


One consequence of the long, hot, cloudless, days we are currently enduring is the difficulty of photographing flowers. Today, I tracked the skies in order to avoid the burning rays, and focus on the more shaded sections of the garden.

It is the very early morning light that reaches and is gentlest on the front garden, keeping such as the trellis in front of the garage in the shade;

while the Starry Night petunias suspended over the porch; the orange day lilies; the lace cap hydrangea and the white marguerites; and the honeysuckle on the main trellis all benefit from a degree of filtering.

By mid morning in the main garden, strong contrasts featured in scenes such as the view from the Kitchen Bed across to the patio; and the Brick Path running from dark to light in either direction. The dead snake bark maple is becoming rather wobbly, so the days of hanging baskets enlivening it may be rather numbered.

Little orange poppy blooms are replacing the dead heads I removed a couple of days ago; fuchsia Delta’s Sarah; the red hydrangea beside the patio; the little pink patio rose on the edge of the Kitchen Bed; and the petunias in the cane chair blending with the phlox alongside; all retained sufficient shade.

Lilies, including those in urns in the Rose Garden; in the Cryptomeria Bed; and in the patio border embraced a dramatic mix of light and shade.

Yellow flowers of lysimachia ciliata Firecracker against red campion; various clematises, including one sporting a Small White butterfly, beside dahlias in the New Bed; day lilies and heucheras picked up the sun’s rays gratefully. The golden marigolds and yellow bidens in this chimney pot tolerated it.

The camera avoided the overhead rays of the early afternoon, so I watched the Wimbledon tennis match between Serena Williams and Kristina Mladenovic.Β Later, the sun was somewhat lower in the sky,

brightening the Shady Path with its hanging baskets and knifophias;

and the Palm Bed where alliums were being sprayed, and from a corner of which our eye was led to the geraniums in the chimney pot on the grass patch.

The light on the Rose Garden was now a little filtered on roses Special Anniversary and Creme de la Creme; sweet peas; and potted begonias and petunias.

This evening we watched the World Cup football match between Brazil and Belgium.

For dinner, Jackie produced excellent roast chicken, sage and onion stuffing, Yorkshire pudding, tasty gravy, mashed potato, flavoursome carrots, and runner beans.




  1. We got a good rain here this morning, which helped a lot, and it is predicted there will be more. I hope so. I hope that you get good rain now too.

  2. absolutely beautiful flowers – the first three (collage arranged) are my fav of the post – the trellis and colors – but a lovely post and flowers have that uplifting beauty – oh and side note – the heat here has beat down some of my annuals – that has never happened to me – but I have to replace some – and I watered twice daily at times –

      1. yes- it can be so time consuming – years back – when I had some bigger areas – I tried some soaker hoses – but it was near the end – now I only do a handful of containers

  3. Whatever problems you had, the results are wonderful, Derrick.
    I really like those starry night petunias.
    Hope you get some rain soon–we could have spared some of ours this morning. πŸ™‚

  4. Well, I have been singing a Beatles song in my head since I read your title, clever man.

    An interesting and poetic stroll through a day in your wonderful garden; how is it that you always have something I love and have never heard of? Knifophias – wow.

    I love the trellises in the opening shots – they look to be built in to the house/garage. Did you do that ?

    I’m sure your mobility has not followed suit – but your blogging is back to its full splendor. Bravo.

      1. Excellent link! Makes me want to watch it again. Boy, it looks old, though!

        Great job with the trellises – LOVE that look! And I know the library but didn’t put it together with the garage. A much better use for the space.

  5. You’re gluttons for that Yorkshire pud aren’t you?
    Wouldn’t surprise me if you had it with your bacon, eggs, sausage, baked beans, tomato,mushrooms; have I forgot anything from a F.E.B.? 😈

  6. You’ve managed to post a beautiful collection of blooms despite difficulties with too much sun. Lovely to take a tour around your garden in the sun, Derrick.

    1. I am secretly rather pleased with the garden this year, after 3 years of work I have it as I wanted, until of course I change my mind! A garden is ever changing and being changed.

      1. Believe me! it gives great pleasure to follow various happenings in your garden. Thanks to Derrick for sharing beautiful images.

  7. You two are taking such good care of your flower-family-members! I love that you share their names! Always a joy to see their beautiful faces! πŸ™‚
    Our summer rains are to start this weekend. My plants, flowers, trees, etc., will be much happier with the rain than with the hose water I give them. πŸ™‚
    HUGS for you two!!! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  8. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an orange poppy, Derrick. It’s really quite nice! I’m jealous over your lilies, my wouldn’t bloom.

      1. Every once in a while that happens to me too. But then again, it happens on my computer’s Spam/email too, so I can’t kick.

  9. A brilliant display of flowers Derrick – you caught them perfectly. Wonderful mix of shade and light. Just love see how healthy they look. We are 10 inches below in rain this year and you can only imagine how dreadful the gardens are beginning to look. And we haven’t even gotten to the dry season yet. Drought is here this year. It’s always a joy to see your beautiful gardens – hello to the head gardener. Hope you are doing well in your recovery.

  10. Jackie you are still the greatest gardening wizard amongst wizards. Memories I treasure still of our lunch dates at the wyvele and the awe I felt when you used to talk me through each plant/flower that took my fancy. You are truly a giant amongst gardeners, and I miss you dearly.

    1. I miss you too, dear Pauline, so often think of those days, before it all went pear shaped it was a good service we offered the folk of Merton, and of course we were the best!!? What a team! Now I concentrate on the garden, it is really too big for me but keeps me going. Love ya! XXXX

  11. Did you take a day off? I came looking for a birthday post! Beautiful flowers! I must thank you for promoting me to look out the window to check on my special starry night petunia which was a welcome home gift from my son when I went away for work some months ago. The galaxy flower (as he calls it) was not where it should be…fortunately I found it- it had been blown away by the raging wind we’ve had over the weekend. I originally kept it indoors but it didnt seem to like that. It has started to thrive (aside from the recent tumble) but looks a little ratty with the dried, dead leaves sharing the same branches (is that what they’re called?) as the newer ones. Is it best in the ground? Sorry for the rambling comment haha.

    1. Thanks very much, Mek. The birthday post is the next one. All our galaxy petunias were broken bits from a garden centre. They are easy to take cuttings from. They should be in a container and need rich compost. They are not frost-hardy. The branches are called stems. Good luck with yours

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