a french garden

Reflections on nature in a garden in France


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Back home

It was good to be back home and back in the garden.  The weather was kind to me and my first day was warm and sunny and I was out first thing to take stock of the garden.

Potager overgrown

It is frightening to see how overgrown the garden gets with some warmth and rain.

Flowering radishes

Even the radishes had flowered!

Flowering leeks

So had the leeks.

Halictus bee in leek

This Halictus bee enjoys the leek flowers as do the bumble bees so I don’t have the heart to cut them down.

Potager

I have cleaned up this part of the potager.  A word of warning – do not weed in low rise jeans and a short tee shirt.  I now have nasty sunburn across the lower part of my back.

Blackcurrants

There is so much to do!  The blackcurrants need picking.

Cherries

The cherries are just about ready and strangely the birds have left us some this year.  Perhaps because they are not very sweet and don’t have much flavour this year.  I was relieved to hear that other people around have the same complaint so it must be the strange spring we have had.

Reine de Reinette

The Reine de Reinette apple tree has an annoying habit of setting too much fruit so the little ones have to be knocked off so that decent sized fruits mature.  I have two Reine de Reinette trees.

Hydrangea cutting

The Hydrangea cutting K. took from our bush has flowered before we have found it a place and planted it.

Salvia

The little Salvia my friend Linda gave me at Christmas was put in the trough so that I wouldn’t lose it in the borders.  No need to worry about losing it now!

Anthophora in Salvia

My cute little Anthophora love the Salvia.  They remind me of little koala bears the way they hold onto the flowers.

Halictus species on radish

This is another problem, the bees totally distract me.  they are everywhere and I keep finding different ones.  This Halictus is feeding on the radish flowers.1-IMG_9571

The poppies are everywhere, just like the bees.

Halictus/Lassioglossom

The poppies are favourites of tiny Halictus or Lassioglossom bees.

Two bees

They are so tiny you might not realise that they are bees unless you look very closely.

anthidium

Every time I pass the Nepeta, the bees attract me.  This one is Anthidium florentinum, I think, a new one to the garden.

Bobby James

I try to appreciate the flowers that are almost past like the Bobby James rose that is only getting established now but like a lot of ramblers will only flower once a year.  I’ve entirely missed  my peonies.

Valerian seed

The Valerian is just about over and the seed heads are floating  around the garden and new plants will probably appear next year.  They are very welcome and are a bright addition here and there.

New Dawn

Several of the roses like “Shropshire Lad” have not done well in the cold rainy spring but “New Dawn” above has kept its bright green foliage even though it is not well-situated in a shady area.

Canna leaves

This Canna leaf has me guessing.  I don’t know what has made the holes but if it was moving from right to left it was finding the Canna very nutritious and growing at a steady rate.

There is so much to do in the garden that I despair to getting it back into some semblance of working order.  There are still seedlings to plant out that are flowering in their seed trays but the garden is still beautiful, if unkempt.

My first dinner back home was sea bass caught in the Gironde estuary by K. served with our new potatoes and fresh-picked peas followed by our strawberries for dessert.  It re-enforced the good points of having a garden and I  looked more calmly at the work ahead with a full stomach.