Cleared For Landing

Today the wind had dropped to “a fresh breeze” with sunny spells. We each enjoyed several sessions of gardening. Mine concentrated on dead-heading and clearing to compost.

Naturally I carried my camera, photographing the reds and pinks of petunias, pelargoniums, hollyhocks; and roses Compassion, Open Arms, and that we call peach beside the patio. The clematises on the kitchen wall swayed in the breeze.

This morning I watched a bee take off from a poppy ready to land on a fresh head cleared for landing.

It was the turn of Nugget Junior II to attract my lens after lunch. Note he or she still has the yellow gape acting as a target for avian feeding parents and has no sign of the red jersey to come if the infant lives long enough.

Junior’s back was turned when I photographed “Where’s Nugget Junior II”.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s succulent shepherd’s pie; robust red ratatouille; roast parsnips; tender runner beans; crunchy carrots, and tasty gravy, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank Domaine La Couquihado 2018 – a smooth dry Cotes du Rhone.


  1. Beautiful flower shots, and it was nice to see Nugget, Jr. The bee photos are beautiful, particularly the second one. The swirling white is ethereal.

  2. Nugget jnr is showing signs of becoming as comfortable as his dad – I know I’ve missed a lot, but this is special to see. Here’s to he/she living long enough to get the red jersey!

  3. Nugget Junior II has not learned to pose yet, or perhaps he is too shy, but he is clearly visible a little below the center.
    I do not know which roses are which, but I thank you for all the rose photos, Derrick.
    P.S. What is red ratatouille?

      1. I’ve learned something new: I always make ratatouille with tomatoes and peppers (it’s the Odessa recipe), but I have never heard it called “red.” Thank you.

  4. Love the hollyhocks: we had them on one side of the barn when I was growing up. Also Nugget Jr II has a lot of nerve, turning his back on you! We know how the youngsters are, don’t we? πŸ˜‰

  5. I wonder if Nugget jnr knows he is supposed to be growing a red breast. It will be interesting to see just how the change happens.

  6. OH! It’s so good to see Nugget, Jr! πŸ™‚ I’m so glad he is doing well today! I hope he lives a long healthy life! πŸ™‚

    Your bee in motions photos are bee-utiful and fabulous! πŸ™‚

    All of the flowers are gorgeous and smile-bringing! I especially enjoy the climbing plants and flowers! πŸ™‚ They don’t just stand there and look pretty….Ha…T

  7. Fantastic Photos Derrick loved the roses and the bee.. And young nugget looks to be thriving well.. The rain this evening will do our gardens good.. <3 πŸ™‚ Take care.. and love to you both

  8. re bee photo: Clever. Yes, I think carrying a camera in the garden is a smart thing.

    I can almost taste that shepherd’s pie.

    Beautiful post as usual.

  9. Ah, so glad the little Nugget is still around. I was able to find him even with his back to the camera. LOVE the bee photos! They are so clear and at the same time artsy. Great shots!

  10. I wondered about the double meaning of ‘deadheading,’ and went to look it up. I found this interesting summation, and was particularly intrigued to find that ‘deadheading’ as a term for a horticultural practice didn’t arrive until about 1950. It’s a great reminder that language always is changing.

  11. It’s so nice to meet Nugget Jr II. (Hope he doesn’t meet fate of Richard II). In the instant Quiz, he is roughly at the centre of the frame, a tad off-centre towards the bottom of the frame.

  12. Everything is beautiful, Derrick and Jackie! Little Nugget Jr. is adorable, and I hope he or she thrives. I was very sad to lose the last little Nugget Jr.

  13. The bee and poppy photos make me feel like I’m peeking into another world. Yet, it’s in your very own garden! So much talent at your place with the photos, gardening, and cooking!

  14. Your bee photos are wonderful! I love the composition and shape of the poppies, the colors, that out-of-focus blur behind them, and, of course, the bee.

    1. Jackie doesn’t use recipes, but she does respond to specific requests by explaining methods. For what it is worth, when I did the cooking (when J was still working) I used Delia Smith’s one for shepherd’s pie which has chopped leeks with the mash. Thanks a lot, Andrew.

  15. Lovely photos as always, but I have to ask did you change camera, using a new template, as your photos look even more vibrant, and I really love the header on this post. πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks very much, msw. No camera change. This seems to be a consequence of the new editor. The header was one of those rare occasions when the precise focusing of such subjects works well.

  16. Fantastic series of pictures. At first I thought the bee and the poppies were my favorites. But that the last one of Nugget Jr. has such a dreamy, magical look.

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