August 15, 2011

August Bloom Day

Time for the monthly round up in the garden, and Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - thank you Carol!

When I got home from holiday last week, I ran out into the garden to have a look around our patch, it is like that if you are a gardener, you have to go see what has changed or sprung up in your absence - good or bad. Check the house hasn't been burgled, put the kettle on for a cuppa and out in the garden, just how it is!

I am always wide-eyed at the growth in a week in August, infact one of our kids said, "Mum the garden has had a mad hairdo whilst we were away!" and I know what he mean't - so much growth and bulk this time of year in just 7 days.

My other immediate impression is that the season has lilted towards Autumn, listing awkwardly like a ship caught by an an unexpected wind, trying to maintain a course but bowing to an inevitable sideways slide off course. Beyond the garden fence, the wheat has been cut and down our lane, the green and red combine-harvester sits in a field, ready for the next day's work. This seems earlier than usual, but the whole year has been wildly out of kilter - weeks of snow and ice before Christmas, two months with sunshine and no rain at all in Spring and now apple trees weeping apples in bucketfuls, blackberries blackening the hedgerows and in the garden, golden hues, burn't oranges and drying seedpods nudging the season towards Autumn. Days are still mild and there is no pinch in the air yet but early in the morning the grass is heavier with dew and in the late afternoon the rays of soft sunshine seem more slanting and illuminating than in midsummer. Everywhere summer flowers have peaked, and taking their place dahlias, cosmos, plox, Japanese anemones, perovskia and echinacea are keeping the garden in colour. And those colours are most often darker, richer, punchier and unrepentently so.

I have cleared two large areas of annuals in the cutting patch to plant seeds for next year - at least a month earlier than last summer. I just can't quite believe that the crumble-eating season seems to have arrived here already, but plums, apples and blackberries won't wait, so crumbles in mid- August it will be! Below I have posted some photos of the intimations of Autumn some whispering, sometime singing full blast across the garden.

apples ripening on the tree at the bottom of the garden

crocosmia 'Lucifer'

calendula 'Indian Prince' above and below

Fennel in flower

Dahlias in bud and flower

dahlia, single form beloved of pollinators

poppy seedhead

hollyhocks complete with pollen bar for the bees

cosmos sulphureus

dark cornflowers and poppy seedheads

annual scabious

bupleurum gone to seed


  1. Hope you had a good holiday - the garden is looking great, not like mine which is past its best. Great pictures.

  2. Looking lovely and your close up images are rich in detail.
    Seeing those apples reminds me of our tree long gone that used to be heavily laden with heritage King apples.
    Enjoy your day!

  3. I love crocosmia 'Lucifer' and your Hollyhocks are gorgeous!
    Happy GBBD :)

  4. Your photos of your flowers always bring a smile to my face. Beautiful.

  5. Hi Belinda, I just love you are the same about when you come back from hols - straight to the garden to check the stems and then a cup of tea!!! These photos you took are absolutely amazing. You have to make greeting cards with these and sell them in your shop. Maybe you do already??!! Our suitcases are still not all unpacked from our hols but the garden is weeded and plants watered so hey whats the rush!!...Sinead x

  6. Hi Belinda,

    You must have been very happy to see your garden like this after your holiday. It looks beautiful! You have a lovely selection of flowers in your garden!

    Happy new week,

    Madelief x

  7. My God Belinda, who takes care of your garden when you go on holiday? Sarah Raven?

    All looks spectacular and I'm crazy in love with the scabiosa and dark dahlias.

    We are so ready for autumn, yes?

    xo jane

  8. Elaine, thank you, holidays were great, and so was the height of the weeds when I got home! I have scratched and stung arms to prove it, but am winning the battle! Honestly, you turn your back...!

    Hostess, thank you, I love taking close-ups, longing for a grown-up camera!

    Christine, thank you! All the hollyhocks are self seeded from about 3 a few years back, almost a forest of them now, they seem to love gravel!

    S and Z, and your comments make me smile, so we are even!

    Sinead, hiya, cards...are they good enough really? maybe when I get a better camera?

    Madelief, I do kind of like the wild look of the garden when I have been away!

    Jane, Hehe, actually it fends for itself - I have planted a lot of drought tolerant things, so the only real worries I have is stuff in pots. This time, Ben, from the blog Higgledy Garden came and did about 3-4hrs weeding which was a real help. The wonders of the blogging connections! I usually feel sad at the end of summer, but I am ready for Autumn this year for some reason.

  9. I really enjoyed my visit. Your blooms are stunningly beautiful. I particularly like the calendula and cosmos. Happy GBBD!

  10. Belinda, Your post is lovely. Enjoyed your thoughts on what happens to the garden when you're away; also on the season to come! I would love to taste your blackberry crumbles, Belinda. Sounds positively delicious. Your flowers are beautiful and your photography outstanding.
    Blessings, Beth

  11. Your photos are just sublime. I read your plant list with great interest and have been inspired to have a bash and brighten up our very dull, very green garden. Gardening books have their place but you bring it all to life in a wonderful way.

  12. Oh my, so beautiful, outstanding plants and photography, the plants seem so much bigger then anything I see here..all lovely but my favourite shot is the dark cornflowers and poppy seedheads x

  13. I need to check the garden each day when I come home from work, right after saying hello to DH and the doggies…
    Your place is beautiful! The black-red dahlia is so pretty, we had one but it didn’t come back after a winter in the basement – need to get a new one! Everything is early over here, too, about four weeks they say. Taking pictures of hollyhocks against the blue sky and closeups of their blooms is a favourite of mine, too.

  14. B - yup they are good enough for cards. I Love love the poppy seed photo. Go for it - perfect to go with your bouquets! Sinead

  15. Hello Belinda
    Thank you for leaving a comment on my post. I have lots to catch up on after a blog break. Your garden is looking wonderful (as always!). I will pop the kettle on and read your previous posts. Hope you and your family have had a lovely summer.
    Abby x

  16. Absolutely beautiful post...I feel like I just had an outing in the countryside! I adore all your flowers and you're so right about autumn. On the way home from work yesterday, I noticed it too, that slight angle of the sun...funny how it seems to happen so suddenly!

  17. That's weird. The comment I thought I was leaving for this post seems to have gone AWOL :(

    I found myself reading back through comments on a much earlier post and think it may have ended up there. Not sure what happened...whether Blogger is senile or whether it's I who am!

    Anyway, I did intend to say Welcome Back after your holiday! Your garden is gorgeous as always and your photographs, splendid!

  18. Thanks Dee, you must be one of my most encouraging commentators, I do appreciate it, where ever Blogger sends the words!! xx

  19. love your garden blossoms! The climate must be so drastically different in your neighborhood :) I've tried growing hollyhocks here but they don't much like the scorching heat apparently. Or maybe it was just my rudimentary gardening skills. Your collection is lovely!