Six on Saturday: Busy!

As the globes of echinops begin to colour up they become a magnet for bees – but this busy bee was dining alone, his friends perhaps still being reluctant to dine out.

Us humans have been busy this week too, and we have been puzzled by the activities of one for neighbours. For historical and geographical reasons our garden abuts onto those of ten other properties.  At the bottom of the garden, the far end where the working greenhouse is, the homeowners to the left of the fence you can see in the picture below (belonging to the property on the right) spent most of last Sunday attaching some recycled pieces of fence to the top of it, increasing the height by about 18″. The next day these pieces had disappeared, fence posts had been inserted about 12″ away from that fence, and a new 6 foot fence was being erected and painted; the next day this fence too had disappeared! If there had been a barney on either or both of the preceding days then we failed to see or hear it, but I rather suspect there was… and it may or may not be the end of the story!

While in the greenhouse, I can also show that I finally got round to some summer sowing: winter flowering pansies, foxgloves, Sweet William, aquilegia, knautia and seeds collected from Salvia ‘Purple Rain’. Apart from the aquilegia and salvia they should all germinate pretty quickly with the current temperatures – and it’s certainly too hot in there for any plants that are ‘growing on’, like those in the above picture but I need to reorganise my outside ‘nursery’ space (and remember to water the plants there).

We have several projects on the go, still under wraps, but there are a number of clues, like the barrowloads of timber taken round to a neighbour for their woodburner, and the bags and bags of green waste piling up by the gate. Our local ‘tip’  re-opened a couple of months ago but you have to book a slot and can only use it once a fortnight – and there is limit to how much can be safely fitted in a car too. Our last visit was mostly with rubble from my border revamping, so the load won’t be as heavy this time but even so it is unlikely we will be able to dispose of it all on our next visit.

Warmer days have brought out a new generation of butterflies and on a number of other occasions recently I have been fortunate to watch the proboscis of a butterfly probing the centre of a bloom for nectar. Today they have been busily enjoying the cutting beds and generally avoiding sitting long enough with their wings open for me to photograph them.

I am linking my busy Six with Jon The Propagator, who kindly hosts this meme.

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28 Responses to Six on Saturday: Busy!

  1. Lovely butterfly – my neighbors have some weird fence issues as well and I have been planting seeds for my winter garden!

  2. Heyjude says:

    The fence saga is intriguing. Why put up a fence, bother to paint it and then take it down again? I need to do a fair bit of cutting back, but at the moment I seem to have lost enthusiasm for the garden. I just look at it and think how overgrown it seems.

    • Cathy says:

      There is a fence update, if you are interested… 😉 Hope you get your mojo back – has it been hot and humid for you? That won’t help. Not too bad here heatwise, thankfully

  3. Goodness, they don’t make it easy for you to dispose of rubbish in the UK. You have so much to get rid of shame you can’t get together with a neighbour

    • Cathy says:

      This is just since Covid, as usually you can make unlimited visits and without booking slots. We still have a fortnightly green waste collection but our bin was full again as soon as it had been emptied last time! Our immediate neighbour has a tiny garden and always lets us put excess in his, but we have asked another neighbour this time too as there are far more bags than the photo showed!

  4. tonytomeo says:

    Well, the bags do not seem to be full of ivy. The limbs look like those of apple, but it is too early for that. It looks like beech too. There are not many big trees in your garden.

    • Cathy says:

      Ah well, you are actually wrong on some of those counts, Tony, as you will see in due course. We inherited several self-sown hazels and a large holly as well as the hedge, and I planted a small woodland in 2000 so there is plenty of scope for big trees… 😉

      • tonytomeo says:

        I saw. Oh my! The scaffold looked precarious. I suppose those are ‘relatively’ big trees; and certainly enough to fill those bags.

        • Cathy says:

          Yes – the US always likes to do things on a larger scale, Tony! The scaffolding was securely tied to the tree, Tony, although still had a bit of a wobble from the top platform…

          • tonytomeo says:

            We do not necessarily ‘like’ to do things on a larger scale. The trees here just happen to be the biggest in the World. Some of the redwood trees out there have trunks that are wider than some of the gardens there, with their lowest branches more than a hundred feet up.

          • Cathy says:

            Nothing like that in the UK of course, although there are some very ancient trees but not on the scale of ‘yours’

          • tonytomeo says:

            They are so big that you can see them from there!

  5. I too have a garage full of bags of green waste and rubble for the tip. My nearest tip is in Bucks but I pay my rates to Herts and so I am no longer allowed to use it. Now I will have to drive extra miles to get to a tiny tip and I have to book a slot. No busy gardener has time for this political nonsense

    • Cathy says:

      Come, come Dorris, it’s all with the best of intentions to keep employees and the public safe – but I understand your frustrations as we could have fallen foul of that too. We actually live in Warwickshire (just!) although have a Staffs postcode and the nearest Warks tip is not far – but there will be lots of Staffs people near us who would normally go there to. Do you have a Bucks friend whose details you could use? As long as the car reg you give when booking is correct they don’t ask for other evidence when you turn up at ours

  6. Chloris says:

    Ah, you’ve been doing a bit of forestry, there’s nothing quite so satisfying,
    I think the English are specialists in boundary disputes. We are all like a lot of little cock robins defending our few feet of territory. It will be fun to watch the next stage in your neighbours’ battles. Razer wire perhaps?
    Well done on getting ahead with your summer seed sowing.

  7. Anna says:

    We are often puzzled by the antics of our neighbours Cathy but musical fences is something we’ve not come across yet. How bizarre. I deduce that a tree has been taken down but have no idea what your projects might be. More clues needed 😄 Do you have a bin for green waste or does it all have to go to the tip? Glad to hear that it’s not too late to sow winter flowering pansies. You will spur me into action when I can find the packet.

  8. Pingback: A Bit of Forestry, Part One | Rambling in the Garden

  9. cavershamjj says:

    i suspect fence samples, like material swatches or those tiny paint pots. seeing what they like. bit bonkers but then many are, i’ve found. my seedlings are struggling in the greenhouse, too hot for them despite the shading. mind you the wallflowers seem to be enjoying it. i should sow some more seeds soon, i have some good aquilegia and hollyhock seedlings i’d like to have flower next year.

    • Cathy says:

      More to it than that, Jon, and apparently they have literally stated that they ‘don’t like nosey neighbours’… Shame about your seedlings struggling in the heat – it suggests it was a sensible move for me to conveniently forget to sow mine earlier!

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