18th July 2021

It rained a lot in the night again, but we are not quite as submerged as this picture maybe suggests!

Raindrops always fascinate me and this is simply rainwater caught in a spiderweb.

Spiderwebs are neat too, of course.

My camera finds pictures in the simplest things.

These are grasses blowing in the breeze. I love to watch when it’s really windy and the fields move like waves on the ocean.

Recently I mentioned that we moved my little maple tree down to the field, where we hoped it would have more room to flourish. On my lawn, the roots had nowhere to go but straight out across a layer of slate and over time the outlook wasn’t good for the tree or house.

It seems to be doing well down there. (left)

In Washington I had some lovely Japanese maples. This one (above) grew a lot more than I expected, but it was beautiful. I had 3 others that I was sad to leave. I often think of that garden, but it was even more problematic than the one I struggle with now.

With cooler temperatures this morning, I decided it was time to go out and have a look at things.

First I spotted a butterfly that obligingly did not fly off.


Then I decided to photograph Queen Anne’s lace from a different angle.

Such amazing symmetry.

Just a few late blooms have appeared on the lilac bushes.

Such a noble effort.

In a way, I appreciate these more than the Spring blooms.

Speaking of trees in wrong places.

This, I believe is Staghorn sumac which can grow quite large.

These chose to grow in most unsuitable locations.

But today was not the day for dealing with Sumac.

This extraordinary plant is mullein which attempts to grow everywhere.

And while the plant sometimes struggles to survive, it still produces flowers. Mullein is good for the lungs!


This enormous Spirea was a pretty little plant that we got two years ago. Last year it sat sulking all summer, shocked at having been planted in the ground by a couple of amateurs.

No doubt constant rainfall has something to do with its growth spurt this year. It stood lower than my waist in 2019. Now it is taller than me. (5ft 6 now due to shrinkage!)

……It even gave me a late bloom.

Behind the spirea and lilac bushes there is a slope where I have had a few wrestling matches with the invasive grape vine.

Now there is another trailing vine, but I can’t do battle with something that produces moon flowers.

Anyway, I think it weaves itself gently around the other plants. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.

Different sorts of clover. It grows everywhere but it’s quite inoffensive.

This little lady should have been included in yesterday’s post about bugs. I believe she is a Japanese Lady Beetle, as opposed to the wicked chap that eats cone flowers.

She was on my rose of Sharon, so I daresay she also had bad intentions, but she’s still cute.

And to my surprise, this morning, rose of Sharon’s bud had opened:

But an even bigger surprise was waiting by the back door:

A monarch caterpillar! Munching his way through the milkweed. Keep going, buddy! Tell your friends!

5 thoughts on “Surprises

  1. You’ve got so many surprises in your luscious garden! I love the raindrops photo’s and towards the end the little Japanese Lady beetle – you and your camera are a mean team 😁.

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