25 August 2013

Just once

Getting out and about wasn't really on the cards this weekend, and the weekdays were back at work, so this week's dispatch comes straight from the back garden. Probably not a bad thing in itself--the blog is called erica's garden after all--but it feels like a bit of a challenge.

Now there's no way of getting 'round it, we're heading into autumn. And although that always heralds a certain level of dread in me as I face the ever shorter days (we're losing four minutes of daylight a day at the moment!), this year is not quite so bad. No really! I'm more ready for autumn since we've had such an astonishing summmer. It's as though we've stored up that summer heat in our bones and in our hearts and of course in our memories. Someone will have to remind me of this in November...

So yes, autumn is here and where better to see it than in the growing things:

Opium poppies:

Opium poppy seed capsule fattens up nicely

Opium poppy seed capsules prepare for the change of season
 Species roses (Rosa glauca):

A bit like the Alchemilla in May or the snowdrops in February,
autumn isn't complete without the obligatory rose-hip picture; these ones are on a Rosa glauca in the garden

Even hostas:

We get so focused on growing hostas for their foliage that we sometimes forget to pay attention to the rest;
hosta seed pods
In spite of the shortening days, the weather is still warm and the garden is still flowering. The Verbena bonariensis has never looked better, the Agapanthus was late but it's already moving on, the Eupatorium (Joe Pye weed) that I got last year is looking great, the deep deep burgundy stems holding aloft the slightly shaggy purple flowers that the bees, hoverflies and butterflies just love... and the Sacred Bamboo (Nandina domestica) is flowering better than I've ever seen it and it was shimmering with hoverflies today! I walked out into the garden in early afterinoon and the air was alive with movement: bumble bees, worker bees, hoverflies and various other flying visitors whirring, droning and buzzing above the Inula, Nandina, Eupatorium and Agapanthus. After the slow, slow start, the hoverflies at least seem to have made up for lost time, and I've also seen more butterflies this year than I have for quite a few summers. Long may it last.

Autumn still brings flowers

And flowers (Eupatorium/Joe Pye Weed) bring bees ... 

...and hoverflies (on Nandina domestica/Sacred Bamboo)

Warm enough still for new waterlily buds to open
This week brought us a most beautiful full moon, which was also a Blue Moon, which leads me to offer you a choice, Nanci Griffith or Mary Black singing Patrick Alger's song:

Have a good week all.

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