Beautiful sunflowers not only provide lovely flowers, plenty of seeds for birds and re-sowing next year, their flower-heads serve as an umbrella for bees. This photo is one my daughter took in her garden as she thought it was quite unusual to see the bees line up to shelter like that.
Now that we heading towards Autumn, I thought it was time I re-potted some of my plants if re-potting at this time wouldn’t cause them more stress. Most of the ones to be re-potted are still growing and would just be getting moved from one pot to a larger pot so they might not notice much difference for the moment. I have an Australian Mint Bush which has grown in a small earthenware pot for years now. It looks healthy enough, I don’t know why, as it was sharing a pot with Snow-in-Summer and that won’t move over for anything.
The Australian Mint Bush hasn’t flowered for a few years but that could be for several reasons – it got neglected, it was in too small a pot, it was crowded, it was in part shade – I’m surprised it’s still alive and looking so well. I also decided to re-pot the Skirmia and Bay tree and again it meant lifting from one pot into another so nothing was disturbed. They look better already. Since I have removed the Snow-in-Summer from the Australian Mint Bush, it leaves an empty looking space, just enough for a cat to curl round on it, so I covered the surface with stones in the hope the little moggies will not realise there is fresh compost below them.
The Petunias were on their last gasp, so I removed them and replaced them with some autumn/winter flowering violas. I’ve been so used to having flowers in pots everywhere, the place would look pretty bare without some colour. I checked my beetroot and turnip and the turnip has all but disappeared. The beetroot is still there but there are a lot of holes in the leaves, perhaps I’m blaming slugs when it could be ants. I was never bothered with ants in that part of the garden before, but this year there appears to be nests everywhere.
I did say in an earlier blog and I liked bees and elephants, but shudder the thought that an elephant should stray into my garden – it did! This is the caterpillar for an Elephant Hawk Moth which was in danger of getting trod on so it was moved to safer ground. On checking it this morning, it had found it’s way onto a clematis stem and was stretching over, breakfasting on some Red Campion. It’s about four inches long and it’s camouflage is excellent with it’s snake-like appearance, but I watched it nibble daintily on a leaf and it had such a neat tiny mouth. We would like to see it develop from caterpillar to cocoon to moth.
I collected some seeds from the Nasturtiums, some to save for next year and some as ‘Poor Man’s Capers’. What an amazing plant the Nasturtium is, edible flowers, leaves and seed pods and very decorative. I found an excellent article with the recipe on someone else’s blog so am happy to link to it. Poor Man’s Capers
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