Anyway our hottest July since 2006 is upon us. I wonder if it will hold up?! Last weekend was a scorcher and most of it was spent in the garden and in the pub. Unfortunately for moi, I was the wrong side of the bar and serving pimms left right and centre. Torture!!
Friday consisted of breakfast in the early morning warmth, lunch in a lovely pub garden and... our pup having his manhood taken away!! The latter resulting in a very grumpy Bracken. Whilst pup wasn't having a very enjoyable morning, I was. Sat in the glorious sunshine, watching the housemartin chicks which I thought must be nearly ready to fledge. They were sticking their heads right out of the nest and when a parent returned to their cleverly crafted abode, the chicks would go crazy! Meanwhile in the nest a couple of metres along, another pair seem to be canoodling or possibly incubating? A bit late, I thought there was a pair doing their thing back in early June but nothing came of it. Hopefully this time they will be successful. Anyway they seemed to be having some sort of domestic because their were lots of bubbling and chattering noises and one appeared to be holding onto the other, keeping it from flying away from the nest. Interesting behaviour to observe.
With the sun dappling the garden flowers in speckles of light and the swifts screaming playfully through the garden, so low I could hear their wing beats, I thought; this is utter bliss! This is pretty much all my day consisted of, how lucky am I?! :)
|Honeysuckle against a cloudless blue sky|
|Rose, petunia and lobelia in a lovely pot painted by my cousins for my mum|
|Hot lips - great name for a plant! (it is some variety of salvia I do believe)|
Saturday morning and after breakfast al fresco we sat for a bit longer, enjoying the morning rays. To our delight we had the pleasure of watching the housemartin chicks fledge! It simply amazes me how they just take off and that's it. They can fly! I think they tooed and froed from the nest for the day, but by Sunday I think the parents were already preparing for their next brood! Throughout the day I took a few more photos of the garden flowers.
|Female Bombus lucorum I think?!|
|Female bombus lucorum??|
|Pup looking sorry for himself|
|Valarian going to seed|
By Sunday morning pup seemed to have got used to his cone collar. He also seemed more like himself so thought he would be up for a decent walk. We have to keep him on his lead for 10 days! We are already going a little crazy. Just so annoying that he can't be running around in the long grass and splashing around in the ditches as per. But it is to make sure his wound heals with no infection so we'll have to bear it for the time being.
|Female scorpion fly|
|A rather rotund donkey :)|
Before I went to work on Sunday evening we had a delicious roast and we ate our own home grown Kale :)
The glorious weather continued and on Monday I did some more voluntary work for Kent Wildlife Trust. The task in hand was... Ragwort management. All the other volunteers had warned me of this task. I rather enjoyed it though. I got a weird sense of satisfaction when I pulled up a hefty one with lots of root in tact. It seems odd to pull up plants that are the home of the cinnabar moth caterpillars but I was informed that if ragwort is not managed then there is a considerable fine for the charity.
In addition to the laborious task we also saw 4 broad bodied chasers near the newly created ponds! Very exciting because I had never knowingly seen one. Another new species for the day was a pyramidal orchid! I have never really looked for them but I was SO excited to see one! Thanks to Kevin, the warden who pointed out both the orchid and the chasers to me :) I was gutted to not have my camera with me, as the chasers were posing nicely on some wild roses!
Well folks, I hope you have all been enjoying our fine weather and enjoyed reading my post :)