Sunday, 2 August 2015

Wrens, Shorts & A New Visitor To The Garden

I've got an hour to myself.

Bliss.

Yesterday, we took the boys to London. We went to the Science Museum for L, who has his eye on being an engineer, and to the British Museum for F, who is set on becoming an archaeologist. Isn't it nice when things divide quite so neatly?

For once, the trains and underground all worked and it was a (relatively) stress-free experience: even the being squished beneath Other People's Armpits in the suffocating thick air of the tube wasn't too unbearable. 
For the most part the Grumpy Teens were well behaved and not particularly grumpy, despite being 'dragged out of bed half way through the night, mum!' (9.30am) and eating only crisps and chocolate for the duration.

Today, we are at home. Well, I am. M and Pops went out marathon training first thing and ran 15miles while Ted and I made a pair of bright pink shorts for running in.

 
I picked some of the sweet peas which have finally decided to flower and put them in the new EB vase...

 
And then got thoroughly Over Excited when a new flutter turned up in the garden on the uber expensive patio buddleia (which, like the uber expensive daphne that attracted the Painted Lady, I now consider to have earnt its exorbitant price tag and place in the flower bed). 

 
Its a Silver Washed Fritillary (see the silver lines on the underwing?). This one is a boy (longer black lines on the wings, which you'll see in the next pic)....


We've never had one in the garden before. They are flutters of ancient woodlands (broad-leaved mostly) so I'm not too sure what he's doing here. We do have remnants of ancient woodland nearby so praps that's the answer. They are such elegant butterflies and have the most graceful, lilting, gliding flight. It's lovely to watch. Happy Days about seeing him :o)

 
I've used my Quiet Hour wisely, by wandering the garden camera in hand. 

First, I found a Comma caterpillar having a Lovely Time amongst the nettles in the wildflower garden...

 
Then I found a tiny Scarlet Pimpernel growing in the gravel on the drive...

 
I noticed that the Sunflowers are nearly out...


And that Feverfew has self-sown itself beside the compost heap where the wasps have been making their nest...


Calendula has done the same. Those seeds must have dropped out from last year's plants without me noticing as I tipped them onto the compost.


I watched a Common Carder Bee stuffing pollen into his baskets...

 
And saw a Buff-Tailed bee enjoying the wild thistles by the fence...


The white Everlasting Sweet Peas were looking whimsical and delicate in the light...
  


And a Meadow Brown had discovered the Verbena growing secretly by the pond...






Toms are growing like mad in the greenhouse...
 
 
And the veg patch is blooming...
 
 
It was while I was in the veg patch (looking for small people) that I got shouted at. From underneath the kale. Not an everyday occurrence.
 
Who was the culprit?
 
 
A baby wren. Honestly, it's getting to something when someone not much bigger than a bumblebee yells at you. There are three of them. And they have spent most of the afternoon in the veg patch or the wildflower patch (which are next to each other) yelling at the top of their heads for their mother to feed them. Which she has been doing constantly, bless her (although  the look she gave me as she flew wearily past on her way to the gutter to look for insects spoke volumes. If she had eyebrows she would have raised them).
 
 
It seems that, no matter how hard you work fetching and carrying, some people are never satisfied...
 
 
I retreated indoors to give my poor ears a rest and to read this fantabulous article in praise of JRs that ma found in Country Life...
 
 
I read the header out to M when he got home. 'There is no braver, more loyal and determined dog than the Jack Russell-' at which point he said: does it say anything about how naughty they are? I continued: 'but don't even consider having one unless you have a good sense of humour.'
 
We all think that sums Pop up perfectly....
 
 
My favourite of all the naughty Jack Russell stories related in the article was the one about Snuff, who was so incensed at the arrival of his mum's new BF that he removed every piece of smoked trout from every plate prior to a smart dinner party, leaving the lettuce leaves they had been sitting on in perfect condition. I also couldn't resist grinning over the antics of Widget who ate a chocolate fudge cake and chased a hot air balloon across two fields, Troy, Mrs T and Tyke Junior who will destroy their dad's Landy when he feeds the sheep unless he leaves the door open for them (they remain seated comfortably inside regardless) and Rigsby, who once ate a cockerel and an entire cold salmon, weed on a briefcase, was sick on someone's bed and refused to come out of a hole unless a roast chicken was wafted in front of him. 

It makes Poppy's antics look like those of a Saint, but then I suppose she isn't two yet....

Hope all are well?

CT :o)
 










36 comments:

  1. I did laugh at those JR antics - we do love our dogs don't we?

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    1. Sure do. Wouldn't be without my two :o)

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  2. *wipes tear* oh my goodness!! those JR antics make our Emma look like a saint as well.....even saintier than a saint, if that's even possible!!! we were discussing JRs at work the other day, because someone-knew-someone-who-just-adopted-one-and-it's-their-first-dog, emphatically deciding that they're not an entry-level dog!

    glad to hear the overpriced flora has earned its keep -- as if one *truly* needs to justify a plant purchase.....ahem.

    i just read of your Bop's great flight -- i'm thrilled all went well..'tis bittersweet though, isn't it? mostly the sweet bit, but you do worry. i've added my blessings to the wind for his continued good health and flourishing.

    jazzy shorts, by the way. once our internets are jolted from slothdom, i'll have to show off my latest sewing project. such as it is. but it's a start and that's what matters! ;)

    xo

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    1. That is a brave choice for a first dog. It'll be a baptism of fire :o)

      Huge relief to get Bop back off into the wild. Been keeping an eye out for him but so far nothing (probably a good thing). Thank you for your blessings my dear.

      Looking forward to seeing your latest sewing project. I have discovered the shorts are see-through! Oops.... xx

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  3. I can say one thing categorically about JR's, they're either Good (and Very Good at that) or they are Awful. Truly Awful. Poor mum had one of the latter from the RSPCA and he had to go back, and we once had one called Zebedee who decided he was Top Dog over my son (toddler at the time) so he had to Go Back too - farmer up the road bred him.

    Whippets were my dog of choice.

    Good news about the Flutters. I saw more this afternoon in one rough piece of unsprayed land than I've seen all summer. Dragonflies too.

    Oh, and never believe everything you read about birds and their habitats. I did a positive ID (got out of the car and went to spy on them) on a pair plus baby still with a good bit of fluff about him of Great Black Backed Gulls on Thursday. So, you say, they aren't particularly rare. Well, these were in a field of sheep . . . on the top of the mynydd (moorland hills). MILES from the sea, and judging by Baby, he had been born and bred there. Odd . . .

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    1. Interesting about the Gulls. The odd thing does turn up in unexpected places. Making the most of an empty niche I guess.

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  4. I am woken at just after 5am every morning by a very effusive wren. I almost don't mind....
    Leanne xx

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    1. We had one come in the bedroom very early a couple of years ago. I thought she was a bee until I managed to catch her and realised it was a very indignant wren! xx

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  5. Awwwwwww your little sweet pea could never be that naughty !
    hahahahahahahaha.
    Your garden is as always so beautiful.

    cheers, parsnip

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  6. On our trip home... We went up to the Nat History Museum ...and Science too! Inspiring places! We also managed a trip to Horrids as our family call it! Nothing horrid about as I gazed avidly around the food halls! Best find - well unusual I guess - was a neatly packaged - Ostrich Egg!
    Your children remind me of my own and my nephews... The eldest wants to be an engineer also!
    JR's - best in breed - in my opinion! Grew up with one and now have one - crossed with a Maltese terrier - Murray is hilarious esp with his pal Ed - our v own Red Dog... Australian Kelpie!
    My mum is an avid wildlife person...and so Painted Ladies .... Etc are names and memories of walks that come flooding back!
    Brilliant blog... Lovely gorgeous photos and JR mayhem! Love it!
    Have fun x

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    1. They are great museums aren't they? So much to see. I was knackered when we got home! Loving Horrids :o) We didn't have our eldest (nearly 20) with us this time or she'd have dragged us all off there. Cue mutiny from the boys...

      I am totally sold on JRs thanks to Pop. She makes me laugh every single day xx

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    2. I'm hearing you re the teenage girl - our eldest is 17 and loved London... Can see us losing her back there!
      So glad you laugh every day with your pooch ... Having a dog/ dogs is the best form of therapy!
      When I pick grumpy 14 year old up from school and he's had a "bad" day doing "nothing" - ( you know, the answer when you ask what they did at school) - the little dog as opposed to the big dog (technical terms) Having escaped around the dog guard (after the post pick up walk) lands on Mr Grumpy's lap and suddenly the world is all G ( a teenage term for all good in the hood) - and I send a prayer up to the Dog God! Mr Murray and Mr Ed save the day - and my sanity!
      Happy blogging... What's next Mrs C T? Xx

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    3. Oh my goodness, the other side of the world and nothing changes, eh? x

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  7. Oh those naughty doggies, they should come with a warning. Love the silver washed fritillary. All of your hard work creating the perfect wildlife garden has paid off. The veggie garden looks wonderful as well, lots of hard work there too I think. CJ xx

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    1. I am so pleased with the way the wildlife has responded to the changes we made in the garden. It is just as I hoped it would be. The veg patch is M's domain. I just go in there to look for interesting small things :o) xx

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  8. How lush your veg patch is! Are you on permanent caterpillar watch?! Contrasting interests lol.
    I rescued a bee yesterday - it was tired, trapped in the fronds of a big old bushy white plant at the bottom of the garden. I used gloves ( in case of stinging! ) gently popped it on a saucer with some sugar water and retreated.
    It had a drink and after a good rest, it flew away! No photos of course as ever is the case, everything needed charging !

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    1. M patrols for pillars regularly :o)

      Good news about your bee- it's great how easily they can be helped if you know what to do. xx

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  9. The Silver Washed Fritillary is a very beautiful butterfly adn I amglad your expensive Buddlia has worked in attracting it. Love all your flower images especially the angle you shot the Sunflower. Yes wren's are very noisy. When I am my 'old caravan' there is always don't follow soos one ther eot waken me up singing on a post but I love it. Loved the story about Snuff so hope you dogs don't follow his example

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    1. I haven't told Poppy about Snuff just in case... Wrens are special little birds, aren't they? x

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  10. Eupatorium purpureum is the plant that I keep seeing smothered in butterflies round here. I would love to add it to my garden but it is quite big. Wonderful photos (I have been practising!) of all the visitors and inhabitants of your garden. I'm sure I have baby wrens here. I keep seeing tiny little brown birds darting in and out of the shrubbery. Your veg patch looks so neat and orderly with its grass path. Someone clearly takes very good care of it.

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    1. It looks/ sounds like Hedge Agrimony, a firm favourite in the woodlands around here with flutters and bees. Sounds like wrens- noisy, bossy, adorable! x

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  11. Hot pink pants and a photo of three dogs ! is there a deeper message going on here, three dogs see how cute they go together :) Nice to have a day out with the family, mines changing now we are all working, time to take stock and have a change me thinks... Beautiful butterfly.
    Amanda xx

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    1. I shall keep waving the front cover under M's nose.... :o) We do things a little differently know everyone's bigger too- still enjoyable, just different xx

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  12. How wonderful that you had a new fluttery friend - and a rare one too!! It must have known the right garden to come to to show off. Those doggy stories do make Poppy sound like a saint, but don't tell her, and don't tell Teddy either, otherwise he will be in despair at what might come! xx

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    1. It was lovely to see it :o)

      The paper has been hidden, in case Pops gets any ideas! xx

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  13. A Jack Russell that can run 15 miles and still look cheerful. I was dragged out for a 3 mile jog which I spent trying to keep up with other half. Off to Bath Spa and then nice pub as it is our 25 wedding anniversary.

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    1. She is a permanent smiler that little dog. 3 miles is a fair old trek and a respectable run- bet you enjoyed lunch afterwards! Happy Anniversary :o)

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  14. Jack Russells and Wrens in one post! You've made my week! :)
    I bought that magazine yesterday because of the cover :). I can so imagine a JRT chasing a hot air balloon across a few fields, it's just what they'd do :)
    Lovely post as always. Hugs for your day x

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    1. Ah, bless you :o) Great subjects, both. Have a good day too xx

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  15. That's so true about JR's. They certainly keep you on your toes don't they, but don't you just love em! Love the photo of Pop, she looks so innocent. :-)

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    1. It's a look she's perfected Deb :-) xx

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  16. I'm very confused by the references to JRs (aside from the fact that the only JR in my day was a Ewing!) as I thought your dogs were terriers? They don't look anything like Jack Russels. :-/

    Lovely to hear about the wrens in the veg patch and congrats on the first SW Frit in your garden! xx

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    1. Jack Russells are terriers! Pops is a JR, Teddy is a westie.
      V pleased re the SW Frit. Nov seen it since but just lovely to know it was there xx

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    2. Oh now I'm even more confused, I'll have to Google! So there are hairy JR's then? I've only seen the short haired ones. I'm having difficulty associating Pops with the sort of rat hunting type of dog I think of JRs as, having seen them in action around farms and stables. :-) I thought both your dogs were the same breed, not that I know much about dogs, which you can probably tell. :-) xx

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    3. There are rough or long coated JRs and smooth coated (like the ones in the magazine photo). Pops is a rough coated although we keep her clipped to prevent matting and things getting caught in her coat. To add to the confusion, there are also Parsons JRs which have longer legs than regular JRs!

      You are not alone in mistaking T and P as the same breed- two years back L was incensed when a passer by asked whether T was P's mother! xx

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Thank you for leaving a comment. I always enjoy reading them and will try my best to reply to every one. CT x