August brought a mixed bag of weather with both hot, sticky days (and nights) and some truly biblical downpours. The allotment went into overdrive and we were, as always, overwhelmed by runner beans and courgettes. Happily I bought new book on preserves and many jars of jam, relish and chutney ensued.
Our Tiny Garden
You’ll see on the overhead view a small black and white cat staring up. She belongs to one of our neighbours and is a regular visitor, often found enjoying a snooze on top of the grow-house or trying her luck around the bird feeders. Sadly, she won’t stick around for any tickles.
Big Birds and Small Birds
Much excitement one afternoon when a Sparrowhawk decided to pay us a visit. My attention was initially was drawn into the garden by the chattering of a large gang of House Sparrows which were all jostling for position around the bird feeders. Then I glanced up to see a much bigger bird perched on the washing line and obviously somewhat captivated by the smaller birds itself. By the time I’d grabbed my camera the Sparrowhawk had hopped over to the back fence. It’s not a great shot but at least it captures the moment for posterity. Gladly, the sparrows all escaped and we didn’t have to witness a blood bath.
Our more usual visitors tend to be Tits of various kinds. I’m particularly fond of the Long-Tailed Tits with their fluffy pinkish feathers and cheeky nature.
I always grow our tomatoes in containers in the back garden. There’s plenty of fruit on them but outdoor tomatoes are late to ripen so still completely green at this point. The Autumn Raspberries also started to ripen in August. We have a yellow variety called ‘All Gold’. It’s only a few canes but enough for a handful of berries for the breakfast bowl every few days.
The long-lasting heads of Achillea continued to provide a splash of yellow throughout August, complementing the arching stems of orange Crocosmia.
At the end of last summer I planted a Hydrangea in a gap next to the front door. The flowers start out white before transforming to a dark pink. Unfortunately only two flowers formed this year. The plant is in a very shady spot so that may be one reason. I’m hoping more will develop in future years as it becomes more established. As some of the earlier flowers started to die back I picked up some pink Cosmos at the garden centre to extend the season into Autumn.
As the Crocosmia flowers die back they leave these chunky seed heads behind which themselves are quite attractive. The Calamagrostis ‘Karl Foerster’ grass has also gone from its whispy summer flowers to golden seed heads which really catch the warm August light.
Berries and Bugs
The berries on the Pyrcantha ‘Red Column’ which I’m training on wires against an East-facing fence gradually turned to a scarlet red colour. The leaves of the ornamental Cherry tree really catch the evening light – still green before they start to turn yellow and pink as Autumn arrives. Big bulbous garden spiders seem to be ever more visible in the garden, weaving their intricate webs.
To see what was happening in the garden in July, click here
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