Sitting here today on the patio(sounds grand but it isn't)on a very warm and sunny August morning, I feel contended that at last the rear garden has come up trumps. I have gardened all my life, even being briefly employed as one, but have never quite been able to find the knack of getting it right, this year I have. It doesn't look that much from the photo below but the top part, which is part hidden, is a riot of colour which is attracting all manner of bees, butterflies and other winged insects. Its all I've ever wanted, a garden full of such insects and I can't be alone, how many of you out there get simple satisfaction from seeing bees for instance, being helped by the flowers in your garden.
For me also, there is one flower that is the king amongst all others Verbena Bonariensis. This purple-flowered plant comes up every year and quickly thrusts itself to six feet in the air, shouting "come and get it" to all and sundry insects - its is magnificient and if you want Hummingbird Hawk Moths in your garden, plus all manner of butterflies, this is the one to grow.
Coming a close second is the lower growing Golden Marjoram. It has a more "while you're passing" approach but neverless, when its in flower it is a magnet for bees and butterflies, plus its good in ommlettes!
And lastly, although not about to set a twitcher's pulse rate racing, perhaps in a few years time though, House Sparrows. I always have a decent sized flock in the garden all year round on the bird tables in the drive but on Saturday they beat the record in count, there were 46. I love them and in reality so should everybody, especially as they are on the point of being classified as "endangered". The photo below shows part of the flock on one of the bird tables, there were also many on another and many in and out of the hedge alongside.
Off now to the reserve to take part in the monthly Wetland Bird Survey (WEBS), although given the desert like conditions on the main marsh I don't think I'll be adding many birds to the overall count.