Showing posts from June, 2022

Wildflower Wednesday: There's an orchid in my lawn!

My wild and woolly front lawn has just got a little woollier with the surprise addition of the above beauty. I spotted a strange looking spike emerging a couple of weeks ago and hoped it was what it's turned out to be: a lovely, lovely orchid. This one's a pyramidal orchid ( Anacamptis pyrimidalis ), which according to the link likes a milder climate and chalk or limestone grasslands. It also goes on to say that it's developed a liking for the more artificial kind of environment - such as beside roads and canals - so perhaps a front lawn on a limey clay soil is just the kind of place it likes to be nowadays. I'm delighted it's chosen my front garden! I've asked NAH to refrain from mowing the lawn for a while to enable it to set seed, though he's keen to mow the 'meadow' now No Mow May has finished. Perhaps we now have the perfect compromise, leave the front lawn so there's taller herbiage there with a lower back lawn to offer the shorter grass

Book Review: Attracting Garden Pollinators

Jean's lovely book looks perfectly at home in my Wild and Woolly Lawn - my original plan was to photograph some of the insects featured, but Covid means I've been watching and reading lots about them instead. It's been great to use the fab photos in this book as a  spotter's guide the past few days. The review bus has ambled down the lane and I'm delighted I'm the next stop on the blog tour for Jean Vernon's latest book Attracting Garden Pollinators . It's great to have a volume which covers all kinds of insect pollinators - as well as bees - as the importance of many of them is often overlooked for our gardens. In the opening chapters stuffed with fascinating insights we find: without wasps we wouldn't have any bees (they evolved from them); some bees nest in snail shells as well as thrushes liking to find them (the snails that is); and hoverflies are highly useful pollinators as well chomping away at those pesky aphids. Jean neatly shows how inte

Have a Jubbly Jubilee

It's Bank Holiday time for us to celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee and amongst the usual Union Jacks and bunting, Chippenham has put its own special touches to the celebrations. Like many communities we have some special postbox toppers and I found the one above earlier this week gracing one in Monkton Park. I know our Knatty Knitters have other plans afoot, so I'm off to explore the centre of town later today. The Museum has had a couple of Jubilee projects I've been involved with. The Young Photographers group worked hard on their '70 Years, 70 Faces' and found at least one face per year of the Queen's reign. NAH and I went along to see ours at the Yelde Hall and add a new meaning to 'we were beside ourselves'! You may recognise a couple of the faces as Mark Allum (below me) and Lisa Lloyd (top right) from Antiques Roadshow live in Chippenham. I think NAH has fared particularly well in the photos, but then I'm biased! I - along with my WI