After the rain

These past few days we have had rain.  I’m happy, the garden is happy.

The garden smells so good too.  As I watch the bees on the Veilchenblau rose, I can smell an incredible mix of the rose, honeysuckle, Philadelphus and warm leaves.

The rain has been in such short supply this year that the flowers don’t mind getting wet and the poppy bends its top petals over its precious supply of pollen.

The bees are happy too and strip off the pollen before the petals have time to dry.

The warm weather tempted my peony Festiva Maxima to bloom for the first time.  It was a present from our daughter which we planted in 2008 but was in completely the wrong place, and there it remained until last year when I decided to move it (by this time I felt I had little to lose although I heard you could not move peonies.)

Five days later the petals were falling but it still looked beautiful like some ageing diva.

I believe this is Rigolotte, which was part of the same present and looking much happier in a sunny position.

Another first today was spotting a bee on the Erigeron.  The Erigeron self seeds in the cracks of the paths and at the base of the house walls but usually it does not attract the bees.

Nigella and Eschscholzia have self sown beside the patio, a bit gaudy but better than weeds.

The Eschscholzia is not as popular as the other poppies with the bees but it does provide them with a pretty colour of pollen.

I have been searching for my bee orchid that has been coming up every year in the front garden and was sad to find no trace of it, despite there having been two plants which produced seed.  But instead a new one has appeared in the back garden and has chosen to place itself beside the water tap, pushing its way through self seeded Centranthus.

Finally, I think the bees have been doing a bit of genetic engineering.  Above is my blue Cerinthe that has happily self seeded in the garden for many years.  It is beloved by the bumble bees and the Anthophora (the bee in the picture).

Today I found a Cerinthe with red flowers!  So I do not know what the bees were doing to the pollen that went on to produce this plant.  Maybe a little extra U.V. light onto the pollen, or an extra squeeze or nibble, surely not a virus?

I had to rescue it from a fair few encroaching heavy weeds and I will continue with the TLC to see what happens.


26 thoughts on “After the rain

  1. Moving peonies won’t hurt them at all but you do have to make certain that they are replanted at the correct depth. Too deep and they won’t bloom. Also sometimes moving them sets them back so they won’t bloom for a year or two. It looks like you were very lucky.


    1. That is indeed our wild or weed mint. I have to haul it out the borders but I love it in the grass. The grass here has the wild mint running through it and it smells divine. Amelia


      1. Hmmm… I brave enough to let my mint into the grass? Sounds divine. I used to have chamomile running through parts of the lawn. It died out after a couple of years but I loved that.


    1. The lack of rain this year has concerned me as I have put in quite a few new trees and shrubs. While they are all drought tolerant they do need water in their first year. We are not allowed to water until after seven in the evening because of the shortage which is difficult. So I was in high spirits when it rained but it has been warm and sunny too which makes a difference. Amelia


  2. I am overwhelmed – so many beauties, it’s impossible to pick one. But, being like the peony, an ageing diva ( 😉) … perhaps I’ll plump for her!


  3. I love that photo of the orange poppies and the bee! A red Cerinthe is quite a novelty – the leaves look paler too. We have also had a little rain, but not really enough as the forecast is sunny and dry for the next two weeks. Lovely gardening weather though!


  4. The red cerinthe is indeed intriguing, I can report that the seed you kindly sent me has produced some nice plants here in Devon, all so far wth blue flowers and very popular with the bees.


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