Mediterranean Volunteers

Sweltering in the warm morning sunshine while listening to the trilling of small songbirds and the repetitive cries of a successfully mated wood pigeon I pulled up swathes of Sticky Willy or Ladies’ Bedstraw in an attempt to halt their upward progress to flower beyond my reach.

Two other climbers, Paul’s Scarlet and Altissimo, each embellish one end of the garden;

a yellow one now clambers over the parade of dead stumps lining the Back Drive.

Foxgloves, as in this image of clematises against the patio fence, are photobombing everywhere, so I gave them two pictures of their own.

Other volunteers include these gladioli Byzantinus which, possibly seeking cooler climes, have escaped from the Mediterranean.

The Rose Garden is filling up with flowers.

A may tree stands at the back garden gate; although the eponymous Weeping Birch on its demise has been severely truncated and will be draped in a clematis in due course its Bed will forever bear its name.

The Chilean Lantern tree is lighting up the corner of the Gazebo Path, while the Wedding Day rose will soon provide a bouquet spanning the Brick Path.

This budding allium and Doctor Ruppel each promise more blooms.

A clump of irises and clusters of blue solanum compliment each other.

Erigeron and ferns sprout from the stumpery.

Later, I published

This evening we dined on Jackie’s tasty savoury rice with spicy, salt and pepper and tempura prawn preparations.

Feeding Fledglings

Yesterday Jackie photographed these deep magenta gladioli Byzantinus in the evening sunlight.

This morning she focussed on her white and blush pink foxgloves

happily located beside viburnum Plicatum,

red Japanese maple and long lived camellia;

not forgetting blue iris, white Erigeron and osteospermum sharing a bed with diurnal orange poppies;

her favourite colour way of orange and purple pansies;

and burnished calendulas.

In the garden today one could almost trip over hungry fledgling birds.

Through the front windows Jackie watched and photographed a young dunnock being injected with nutriment.

 

 

 

Later, I watched an apparently abandoned quizzical youngster who had no instruction manual. It may have caught a winged insect, but didn’t really know what to do with it.

Meanwhile greenfinches swung on the almost empty seed feeder

while sparrows scrambled over each other for the last of the suet balls.

This evening, with Jackie’s superb extra garlicky savoury rice left over from yesterday, I produced a meal of Lidl’s prepared pork spare ribs ¬†and runner beans. I spent some time reading the instructions on the ribs packaging then was offered a quicker alternative method by the Culinary Queen, whereupon, feeling beset by Harry Enfield,

I had to get my head around a different procedure.

All turned out well in the end. Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the El Zumbido Garnacha Syrah.

Meet Nugget Junior

This morning while gardening Jackie photographed

rose Emily Gray, a highly scented rambler gracing

the back drive border out of sight in this shot;

clematis Doctor Ruppel climbing the weeping birch;

a row of blue irises with the bonus of a yellow stowaway in the bag of bulbs;

Nugget,

and his son Junior, still not qualified to wear the red jersey.

After lunch I managed the photoshoot.

On the kitchen corner of the patio we have delicate magenta gladioli Byzantinus blending with deep blue verbena Vectura and pink pelargoniums,

in turn reflecting similarly hued diascia potted above cascading Erigeron.

Nearby stands this peach rose we inherited.

Ornamental alliums of a number of varieties are gradually un-peeling throughout the garden.

Nugget attempted to encourage his son to feed from the suet pellet tray, but the youngster was deterred by my wandering around

the vicinity of the wisteria arbour.

I therefore focussed on this from above, showing how the rose Paul’s Scarlet and the clematis Star of India are poised to replace the fading pale blue blooms.

Later Jackie came in for her camera when Nugget and Junior both occupied the tray. Unfortunately they were gone by the time she returned.

Later, Nugget left Junior to his own devices while he flew off with a pellet for the next brood. Apparently robins are such prolific breeders that they can produce 3 to 5 clutches of up to five eggs a year. As soon as the youngsters earn the red jersey they are chased off by their father, so Junior will soon go and find someone else’s garden.

The marigolds in the Oval Bed continue to proliferate.

In the Rose Garden For Your Eyes Only is bushing out nicely, while Gloriana towers above it;

Schoolgirl vaults the arbour;

and flamboyant Festive Jewel,

sprightly Summer Wine and middle-aged Madame Alfred Carriere

carelessly cavort in concert.

This evening we dined on minted lamb steaks, boiled new potatoes; crunchy carrots and cauliflower; and firm Brussels sprouts with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the El Zumbido Garnacha, Syrah.