Six on Saturday. Surprises.

Plants often spring surprises. This is supposed to be Hippeastrum Apple blossom. It’s not. It was planted in October – to flower at Christmas. It didn’t. I’m not complaining, it’s given me a lovely surprise today.

I’ve given it pride of place on the the greenhouse coffee table. As you can see, there’s lots of potting on to do in there. I’m half way through my scented pelargoniums. I’m potting them into large terracotta pots to stand out on the terrace.

Speaking of surprises, my garden is full of ladybirds. They are everywhere. Look into the centre of any plant and you’ll find a cluster of them. Here they are nestled in the folds of a grey-leaved phlomis. Looking in my dictionary, I’ve discovered the group noun for ladybirds is a “loveliness.” What else could it be! Luckily I’ve left all my dead stems in the garden, giving ladybirds and other insects somewhere to hibernate.

And my final surprise is the pond. Not only is it holding water after springing a leak and causing us all kinds of trouble, but we now have tadpoles – week’s later than friends a few miles away. And joy! Today I spotted newts. I rather like surprises such as these!

Thank you to the Propagator for hosting Six on Saturday. https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/2019/04/06/six-on-saturday-06-04-2019/#comments

Links :

Hippeastrum : https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=118

Alton Cedar greenhouses. Mine was second-hand and we’ve painted it black. https://www.altongreenhouses.co.uk/

Ladybirds:

https://community.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/b/notesonnature/posts/a-loveliness-of-ladybirds

We made a pond

We made a pond.Twice . We hired a man with a JCB. He was very enthusiastic. We marked out the site, discussed the size and shape, waved our arms around windmill fashion – and then made a big mistake – we went away for a few days. When we returned, we found a huge straight-sided hole in the ground and massive rockery.

When we recovered from that financial and confidence sapping disaster -we hired another man with a JCB. This time we stayed put. My other half literally guided the bucket into position. I watched- ready to call an ambulance.

We bought a pond liner when we should have spent the money on carpets. We lived for some time with concrete floors.

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Cardamine pratensis or Lady’s Smock grows happily in the boggy margins.

S oxslips grow along the sloping banks. such a delicate flower.

I’m  replanting the  iris and camassias around the edges and trying to control the stinging nettles and brambles. I don’t want to eradicate them completely- just keep on top of them. I garden with a light touch. I love the butterflies that hatch their eggs on the nettles. So gardening for me is a compromise.

Have you ever made a pond? What lessons did you learn along the way?  I hope you have enjoyed these photos of my garden. It’s a peaceful place where humans have to share with the wildlife.