Tag Archives: garden

Six on Saturday – Pollinators return

It is always a special moment when we see the bees and other pollinators returning to the garden in the spring. So for this week’s Six on Saturday, I am going to just share six pollinator images.

Six on Saturday – 17th October 2020

This week it is all about leaves.

  1. Birch leaves – the leaves are fast disappearing from the birch trees.

2. America hawthorn. Bigger leaves than our native hawthorn, and bigger berries too, though there was no berries this year.

3. Crab apples are looking nice now especially as the leaves are turning yellow.

4. Lime tree leaves also go a lovely shade of yellow.

5. Rowan leaves. Redder leaves. The rowan in the garden has actually lost all it’s leaves already, this one is in the field below the house.

6. And finally oak leaves, one of my favourite trees.

Thank you to The Propagator for hosting Six on Saturday.

Six on Saturday – 29th August 2020

This week I am combining Six on Saturday with the Lens-artist photograph challenge, using the word “Growing”. So what is growing in the garden this week?

  1. Twin courgettes – in fact con-joined twins.

2. Squash: very little fruit – too wet and cold this year I think.

Squash plants

3. Runner beans – not plentiful, but there at least. Let’s hope for a good September so we get a good crop.

Runner beans

4. Rose – possibly the last rose of summer.


5. Chamomile flowers.


6. Beetroot – we have had nice sized beetroot this year.


Thank you to The Propagator for hosting Six on Saturday, and

The Lens-Artists for hosting their weekly photo challenge.

Six on Saturday

Well it has been one stormy week. It hardly seems that storm Ciara finishes and we are now getting Storm Denis. I don’t think I have ever seen the place so wet.

  1. These tete-a-tete daffodils are standing in water. I have never had water standing in this bed before and this is the second time in a week.


tete a tete daffodils

2. Earlier in the week between the two storm it got very cold and we woke to semi white – not snow but frozen hailstones. The garlic is just showing through.



3. Despite the cold weather the frogs have decided to spawn anyway – first spawn appeared today. We have not as many frogs as other years (about 50), but it may be due to the fact that there is water everywhere and they are spoilt for choice as to where to spawn!

Frog spawn

Frog spawn

4. I disturbed a pair of bullfinches feasting on the buds of one of the apple trees so they moved to the blackthorn in the hedge instead.

Bull finch


5. In other years this willow would be buzzing with earlier pollinators. But this year and last year’s early spring means it is coming out before the pollinators emerge. This is one of the problems with climate change – when nature gets out of sync with itself.



6. Winter Purslane – self seeds itself in the greenhouse and polytunnel and is a great addition to winter salads.


winter purslane

With thanks to The Propagators Six on Saturday for hosting.











We cannot tell what lies ahead of us, we cannot predict our future and maybe it is just as well. What we do know is the world is changing, as it has always done, but now it is in a way that frightens me. I fear for my children’s future in a world where climate change will dominate everything. I fear for my children’s future in a world where political leaders still fail to heed the urgency of the crisis.

So let us do something positive for our future, for the future of our children, let us try as suggested by Ann-Christine (Leya) to – do something today that your future self will thank you for.

  1. Plant a tree. While they are growing trees will store carbon, and provide habitats for insects, birds and other wildlife.

Oak tree

Oak tree

2. Grow some of your own vegetables. Cut down on those food miles and enjoy so really fresh food.



3. Don’t buy compost containing peat. Peatlands are being destroyed throughout Europe to provide compost for gardens, parks and the horticultural industry. Yet peatlands store about half a trillion tonnes of carbon, twice as much as is estimated to be stored by the world’s forests (from The Garden Jungle – Dave Goulson). I am guilty of buying peat compost too (peat-free is hard to source here), but I am determined after reading this statistic not to buy any more.

Peatland - Ballycroy National Park

Peatland – Ballycroy National Park

4. Have a compost heap – no room – then start a wormery. Picture below is of my newish hot composter, but we also have wooden pallet compost heaps (of which I cannot find any photos!) in the garden.

Hot composter

Hot composter

5. Plant some flowers for pollinators. Pollinators are so important for pollinating so many of our food crops. But flowers also provide food for other insects too.



6. Leave an area of your garden to grow just a little bit wild, and be chemical free!

Grass and wildflowers

Grass and wildflowers

Also joining in this week’s The Propagators Six on Saturday – slight variation on the theme this week, as Storm Ciara prevented any photos being taken today:)





April flowers

April brings Spring flowers. I was interested to see differences between recent years. Here are wood sorrel flowers from mid April 2018. This year they have already been in flower for a couple of weeks.

Wood sorrel

Wood sorrel from 18th April 2018

This year I first photographed Lesser Celendine in flower at the end of January. Here it was in April 2015. It has a longish flower season and is in flower along some of our local hedgerows today.

Lesser celendine

Lesser celendine from the 10th April 2015

Fruit blossom is a real favourite of mine. Here are pear and June berry blossoms from the 20th April 2016. The June berry is covered in blossom already and the pear is just starting.


The crab apple is just coming out, and below is what is looked like on the 12th April 2017.

Crab appled

Crab apple blossom

And of course I cannot pass the opportunity to post a bumblebee photograph, as while March is when we first start seeing the queen’s emerge from hibernation (though it was February this year), April is the month that we start seeing the queen’s in any numbers. And it is so nice to have them back.


Forest Cuckoo Bumblebee

Inspired by this week’s Lens artist photo challenge – Hello April.