Friday, June 30, 2023

Planes and Roses

On Wednesday we had a day out and about.  The weather stayed dry until we were driving home when it absolutely cascaded down and the windscreen wipers were on overdrive most of the way.  

Firstly we visited the RAF Museum at Cosford.  There were lots of changes since our last visit.  I didn't take many photos this time.

Hawker Hind Trainer 
Boulton and Paul Defiant

 Wellington Bomber

Bomber Crew, the crew member with the dog was a rear gunner.

Spitfire PRXIX 1945

We then moved on just a mile or so to David Autstin Roses. It's really just behind Cosford's air field but you have to drive round to get there. 

  It was very busy so we didn't stay too long. 

I took photos of some of the roses that caught my eye.  It was hard to take general views as there were lots of visitors and no space in the cafe or garden for lunch.  It's a very popular place.

The Lion Garden although I didn't take a photo of the lion statue that gives the garden its name.

Renaissance Garden
 One of the avenues in the long garden.

I love all the different names of the Roses - Port Sunlight where we visited a few years ago when we stayed on the Wirral.
These smell of orange blossom.
The Poet's Wife has a lemon scent.

Tottering-by-Gently.  I really liked this one especially the name.  I feel I'm just tottering by lots of things at the moment.  Named after a cartoon by Annie Tempest which is apparently in the Country Life magazine.

Shropshire Lass - well we were in Shropshire- is a rose from 1968, the blooms fade gently from pale blush to pure white.

Gertrude Jekyll - a firm favourite with many including me.

Emily Bronte - such a delicate colour.

Sir John Betjeman - such a lovely colour.  I share a birthday with him.  Day and month not year of course.

Boscobel - had to include this as that's where we were off to next - it's just a few miles down a long and narrow but straight road.  We often call them Roman roads, perhaps they were.

Boscobel House

I think it deserves a separate post.

Monday, June 26, 2023

After the Rain

I was chatting to friends yesterday and they mentioned that I hadn't written a blog post for ages so I popped out into the garden yesterday evening after the rain had cleared away to take a few photos.  The garden looked  lush and green rather than dry and dusty.  

Reasons for not writing a post have been mostly the heat which causes a swollen foot and ankle if I sit too long but also the fact that whilst it has been hot we have been boxing up books and taking down the  book cases ready for some work that has to be done  in our living room. Asbestos has been found in the artex ceiling so it has to come out.  The room has to be completely cleared (nightmare) and sealed whilst the work is done.  This will happen in a couple of weeks time but we thought we'd start on the books and book cases as this is the hardest and largest part of the process.

Anyway back to the garden.

A long the path to the pond are the herbs, strawberries, gooseberries, potatoes and courgettes in the raised beds.  The sweet peas are in the potato bed and two tall great mulleins have appeared amongst the gooseberries.

Courgettes on the way.  Aubergines and peppers in the greenhouse as well as tomatoes. 

The tideist part of the garden with the top lawn newly cut.  The side lawns and the top areas have been left to grow through 'No Mow May' and still into June.
Just a narrow path has been left so we can walk up to the seat at the top of the garden.
The grass has got so long now and very few of the wild flowers have appeared so far.  We seeded the ground with Yellow Rattle, Corn Marigold, Cornflower and Corncockle.  Just the Corncockle has flowered.
We've had to top up the pond several times over the last few weeks. 

 I think both the Flag Irises and the Water Lillies have taken quite a lot of water as well.
There are a few yellow flowers in the garden at the moment including the Great Mullein (Verbascum Thapsus) and the Hypericum (Rose of Sharon or Aaron's Beard) below.

A couple of years ago there was one Mullein and it spent the Summer covered in green Shield Bugs. 

Last year it didn't appear but this year there are two but noticeably no shield bugs so far.
 I think this plant is a Turkish Sage but I'm not sure.  We inherited it when we came here so its at least twenty five years old but I still don't really know what it is.


 Another plant we inherited when we came here.  The yellow rose has been moved three times and still flowers each year.
Below Hypericum

This one self seeded quite a few years ago and has spread across the garden in several areas.

Poppies have been lovely too both the red and the mauve ones.  The bees love them.

Last but not least visitors to the garden over the last week.

A little fox cub, luckily I had my camera handy when it popped it's nose through the hedge and.....
a ring-necked parakeet.  Paul heard it calling and was able to take the photo above before it flew away.

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Daisy Days

 Daisies and buttercups abound on our unmown lawn and along the verges Oxeye daisies or Moonpennies dance in the gentle breeze looking as if they are lapping up the heat of the sun. 

Oxeye daisies were my mother's favourite flower so I always think of her at this time of year.

Such a pretty flower.  Known also as Dog Daisy and Moon daisy or moonpenny.
It's been so hot I haven't wanted to sit at the computer for long enough to write a blog post or to travel very far to take photos.
The factor 50 products are out and being used.  I'm very careful about covering up since I had a Basal Cell Carsinoma taken from my arm early last year.
Last week, before the weather got too hot, we walked around the lake at Trentham and also the new Meadow Walk at the Monkey Forest.
 It was mostly about new young life in both places.

Also spotted

A tree creeper beautifully camoflaged.

Fox and Cubs (Pilosella Aurantiaca)
A bug hotel shaped like a bottle oven.
 We've discovered a new on-line site called BirdNerd which can identify bird song in different places.  As there are some birds I can't hear anymore unless they are very close it's an interesting thing to have.

Whilst it has been so hot we've been taking early walks locally across the various green areas we can easily walk to from home.  This morning by the fishing pond we heard

On Sunday morning we ventured across Fenton Fields and heard many different birds including Skylark, Whitethroat, Song Thrush, Blackcap, Goldfinch, Wren, Greenfinch and Sedge warbler.
At home in the garden we hear mostly Blackbirds, Goldfinches, Crows and Wood Pigeons.

Small Copper butterfly.  Last two photos taken by Paul on Fenton Fields.

Gosh, this has become a long post.  I was going to include photos from a very dry garden but perhaps I'll do that next time.