May 2022 Pick a topic CMMC challenge

This week the Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge (CMMC) is for a topic from her photo.

Cee’s photo is of a business behind railings. Windows feature strongly.

My photo was taken on my phone for a Twitter hashtag #FingerpostFriday. I wasn’t satisfied with it for that purpose, but it does include several of the same features as Cee’s photo including notices with lettering. You have seen it here first!

Black direction signs, windows, railings and notices

Garden wildlife

This year the wasps returned to the bird box, which hubby had cleaned out after last year’s nest had been deserted. There was some activity until a hot spell, which the wasps did not survive. The wasps seemed to attempt to regulate the temperature inside the box. A few of them stood near the entrance flapping their wings.

I have done more gardening this year than in previous years, digging out some invasive plants to give other species a better chance. The invasive plants will spread again from the small clumps I have left. While I was working in a shady part of the garden some movement attracted my attention. It was a large, healthy-looking frog, which disappeared into the undergrowth. There isn’t a pond in our garden, but there must have been enough moisture for this amphibian even at the end of a dry spell.

Another amphibian, which was hiding under a boot-cleaning device propped against the edge of the patio, was a toad. It stayed nearby long enough for me to fetch my camera.

Dark brown toad on concrete capping stone at edge of patio

We saw a bee with a red tail digging a hole in the sloping lawn. It stayed inside, making photography difficult. Afterwards the hole had been filled in.  If we hadn’t seen the bee, we might not have noticed the fine soil on the surface. Can we expect any bees to emerge?

Soil in grass. a bee is just visible at the top right of the soil
The bee digging (above the fine soil on the top right)

The bees’ nest we had in the front garden last year has not been used again.

We have seen a few caterpillars. There were one or two green ones on the aquilegia. Buff-tip moth caterpillars (identified by Annabel Sherwood on Twitter) were new to us. They were all spotted on the ground; on two occasions on a path and a smaller one on the earth.

Caterpillar ID help, please. @BC_Cumbria pic.twitter.com/4u9N5lDut3

— Susan Sanderson (@suesconsideredt) August 28, 2021

Various pollinators have included bees, hover flies and a few butterflies, especially white ones. A handsome bug was identified by Moira O’Donnell as a green shieldbug nymph – what would I do without Twitter?

A shield bug on the invasive pink geraniums (loved by bees and other pollinators) in our garden #WildWebsWednesday pic.twitter.com/hPBqfLEf1n

— Susan Sanderson (@suesconsideredt) September 1, 2021

Adult shieldbug seen in May

Candy-stripe spiders have made their nests inside the lid of our brown garden-waste bin. Thanks to Dolly for the identification. They were there at the beginning of August and are still there a month later. The egg sacs are possibly a bit bigger.

pic.twitter.com/UvFynkFayJ

— Susan Sanderson (@suesconsideredt) August 4, 2021

Do click on the links to see the pictures on Twitter.

Wildflowers near water

One Saturday morning during the heatwave, I set off in the morning to look for wild flowers near water. This was the theme of a #WildFlowerHour challenge on Twitter. I shared most of the photos I took on Twitter. The hashtag was #ByTheWater

I am creating this post to give more background information about the area where I took most of my photos.

The public footpath currently runs from the beach, through a field, across an old wooden bridge, over a pedestrian level crossing and up to a lane. There are plans to divert it. I have looked at the plans in the local library. At the time I was rather preoccupied. I didn’t find them particularly clear. The maps were large scale and I couldn’t be sure of the precise route of the proposed path.

I am interested to find out where it will go and what disturbance there will be to the established wild plants in the area. I am indebted to participants in #wildfowerhour especially BSBI (Botanical society of Britain and Ireland) for the identification of some of these plants. Any errors are mine!

Where I have only partly identified the plant, more details would be welcome in the comments.