2013/16th August 2023

It appears I gave up too soon the other day when struggling with WordPress.

It’s what I am apt to do when I am overtired. In that condition it would take me all afternoon to achieve what this morning I managed in less than a minute.

Why must we be presented so regularly with unnecessary challenges?


Perhaps they keep the brain activated, but I can think of better ways to exercise it.

And less annoying!


In England you talk of hedgerows. Here we don’t have hedges along our roads, so I don’t know the correct term for the assortment of growth we see. It is thick now, and quite pretty.


Purple Loosestrife and bullrushes.



Wildflowers have such simple elegance.



Queen Anne’s Lace in all its forms, photogenic.


In this form, as a reader pointed out, they resemble a firework display.


Even when there’s not much left but seeds.

Above, I think is wild mustard.


In my garden where there might be a lawn, I have various sorts of grass and many weeds.

But parts of it I noticed yesterday, are almost completely covered in clover.

Clover too has many types and appeals to many insects as well as groundhogs.

One can always count on weeds to bloom.


It’s not only the daisies having a poor year. The Blazing stars didn’t blaze, marigolds didn’t grow and many daylilies gave up at the first hurdle. (Unlike Ed’s!)

Not only that, but there is not a single apple in sight. Not such a surprise as the two trees in question are in very sad shape.

What kills apple trees?

Grant removed a lot of invasive honeysuckle last year. They are old, but maybe the apple trees will recover.

Grant used to collect up buckets of apples off the grass and cut them up into manageable pieces for our friends. The deer will be so disappointed.


It wasn’t just my imagination on Tuesday, that something had shifted.

When I went around the garden later that day I couldn’t believe how the coneflowers had begun to droop in a matter of hours.

Normally I snip off a faded bloom or two, but this day more than half appeared to have gone over.


Next morning though: “Hello! We’re back in business!”



Phlox had recovered its enthusiasm too.

Perhaps all plants require is acknowledgment and verbal encouragement. And I’d missed a day!

Mum talked to her garden but mostly it was in the form of threats:

“Now grow!” Woe Betide if they didn’t.


Mum would have had harsh punishments for any creature that tied her plants in this sort of knot.

Itty-bitty shredding machine.


They eat…

…and they, um, shit.

If this lot proceed to moth-hood, yoiks!

Tussock moths.


A little dancing trio.


When I first encountered Tussock moth caterpillars I was a little taken aback by the rapidity with which they ate through a flowerbed. But they were not attacking the milkweed then.

They were at the end of the driveway munching on something else.


Being at the end of the driveway, that flowerbed was rather more of a challenge than I could manage.

So when it was suggested that removing it would give better access to snow-plows and delivery vans, it seemed the sensible thing to do. And I don’t regret it.

No doubt I should have realised the Tussock-moths would search further afield:

“Yo, look! Milkweed!”

“Yum. That’s the good stuff, right?”


Next year maybe I’ll post a sign directing them to the lower field where there is as much as any caterpillar could possibly stuff itself with.

Though maybe that’s where the Monarchs diverted to and I think it best they stay out of each other’s way.

We just want everyone to be happy!

5 thoughts on “Challenges

  1. Your flower photos always leave me with a smile. It’s a pity about the apple trees. My father had an apple tree in his garden years ago and always said that a fruit tree should never get too much water (and at least 8 hours of sunlight). Oh yes, and in the Winter he usually pruned it … but that’s unfortunately all I know about apple trees.

  2. Definition of a weed: A plant growing where you don’t want it to. A hybrid rose in the cabbage patch is a weed!
    Lovely post. As usual. Thanks. As always.

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