Another mixed bag.

Having a few photos that couldn’t be made into a post by themselves, I’ve put them together to make a mixed bag for June.

Each morning, at exactly the same time, I get a wake up call.  Not from the clock radio, which starts with gentle classical music to ease me into wakefulness, no it is this fellow (why am I assuming it’s male?) a large baby bird which was sitting on the back lawn the other day.

Crow, rook or jackdaw?

Crow, rook or jackdaw?

He is a big baby, obviously just out of his/her nest and crying loudly for it’s parents to come and feed it. It has lovely blue eyes but I do wish it wouldn’t start demanding food at dawn –  4am!



Just for a second it opened it’s beak, I mean, do I look like it’s parents? I’ve looked in my bird books to try and identify it, but can’t decide is it a rook, crow, jackdaw.  I’m thinking  jackdaw, because of its blue eyes and  because the parents made their nest in a hole in next doors oak tree which is usually used by the grey squirrels each year and also from the sound they are making. I hoping that probably Snowbird at Gardens and Wildlife    will be able to identify it for me. I should have taken more notice of the parents so that I could identify them. This chick wasn’t bothered by us all (our daughter was visiting with family from Bristol) so once I had photographed it with the macro lens, nice close up! we all left it in peace for its parents to come and find it. It wasn’t long before it moved into the borders where it was hidden.

They have moved away now, we can still hear them calling in the trees, but at least I’m not waking up at 4 am any more!

Mdme Gregoire Staechelin

Mdme Gregoire Staechelin

Having mis-named one of my roses in a recent post as Mdme Gregoire Staechelin, I thought I ought to show you the correct lady.

Mdme Gregoire Staechelin.

Mdme Gregoire Staechelin.

She is a lovely pink rose climbing on the second post of the pergola, here she is getting nice and cosy with Clematis Margot Koster.

Clematis Abundance.

Clematis Margot Koster.

She is growing up the post on the right of the pergola, but has climbed up and over to the left side to meet Clematis Margot Koster, I think they go so well together. Hopefully I won’t make a mistake in future and give her name to Mdme Alfred Carriere any more, I knew she was a Mdme though!

Poppy Garden Gnome.

Poppy Garden Gnome.

My new poppy,  three pots were bought a couple of weeks ago and now they have started flowering in the Sunset Border. Garden Gnome is such a tiny poppy, only about 6 inches tall and for a long time, the flower was just bigger than  a 50p piece, though getting bigger each day.. It is such a vibrant red/orange, but I feel I can get away with it in this border! I must save seed of this poppy and sprinkle it through this border and one of the others. There are lots more buds still to flower, so I will be enjoying the flowers for quite some time.

Rosa Snow Goose.

Rosa Snow Goose.

Rosa Snow Goose on the archway into the woodland is doing well this year. I had a lightbulb moment the other day,  when I thought I could have twice the number of flowers if I took some cuttings!

Rosa Snow Goose.

Rosa Snow Goose.

I have taken 4 cuttings, so we’ll keep fingers crossed and hope that at least one  roots, so that I will have a tiny plant to place on the opposite side of the archway in the autumn.

That’s it for my mixed bag for June, I must get back to the weeding and getting more plants planted that have been waiting by the back door for months.

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34 Responses to Another mixed bag.

  1. wellywoman says:

    That’s a very cute chick. We had blackbirds nesting in our hedge for the first time since we moved here. The adults would perch on the arbour we’d just made with mouths full of worms and then fly into the nest. They didn’t like us being in the front garden though so we spent quite a bit of time hiding behind the front door and waiting for them to leave the nest before we could dash out without spooking them. I love that Poppy. I think it might be a biennial so scatter the seeds as soon as you can for more flowers next year. 😉 Have a lovely weekend.

    • Pauline says:

      It was lovely, but so big Louise ! It’s wonderful when wildlife chooses your garden to live in, I feel I must be doing something right, I’m sure your arbour provided just the right spot for your blackbird. Thanks for the info about my little poppy, I will certainly sprinkle seed as and when they are formed, I might keep a few for sowing early next year as sometimes our winters are so wet, that seed rots before it can start growing. We are having some much needed rain at the moment, the plants will be a lot happier for having a good drink!

  2. susie says:

    That is a beautiful rose Pauline and she pairs nicely with Clematis Margot Koster. Would love to have clematis blooming through the summer and have bought several that are supposed to, but no luck so far. Have a great weekend.

    • Pauline says:

      I agree Susie, she is a beautiful rose! Most of my clematis are varieties of Clematis viticella, which flower from now until September over here. This variety doesn’t get Clematis wilt, they have smaller flowers than the ones that flower earlier, but there are so many of them, they always put on a good display.

  3. Caro says:

    Well, I just had to look on an ornithology website to identify your huge baby bird, Pauline, and it’s a rook I believe. The pale beak is the clue. We have lots of crows on Hampstead Heath, impressive huge birds usually found foraging in the bins! I used to get woken up at daybreak by birdsong but I think I’ve become used to it now so sleep on. I like to think the birds are there, though.
    I love that everyone is showing off their roses now, they’re such a symbol of English summer garden days, so beautiful. I hope that your cuttings take for you. Plants for free are so satisfying!

    • Pauline says:

      Many thanks Caro for your identification of our huge baby! I looked in both my bird books. but they didn’t identify the chicks unfortunately. I was thinking that rooks always lived in a rookery and not on their own, so I was surprised to find them in a hole in an oak tree where a branch had come off.
      The roses are fantastic this year, I think I can say, this is their best year so far. Two of my cuttings seem to be ok, two aren’t quite so happy, I’ll just have to be patient and see how many take. Of course I could always take hardwood cuttings later in the year, nice to have a back up.

  4. Anna says:

    What a fine looking fellow Pauline. He’s only a babe and doesn’t know that us humans are still in bed when the light comes on. We are missing regular evening visits and calls from our moorhen. Presumably the young have fledged. What a beautiful rose/clematis combination – Margaret Koster looks so floriferous. Any advice on taking rose cuttings would be much appreciated. I thought that I may have to wait until the foliage dropped but obviously the deed can be done now. Chloris suggested that I try with the ‘New Dawn’ rose that we we plan to take down later this year.

    • Pauline says:

      When we saw Moorhen chicks a few weeks ago Anna, at Abbotsbury Swannery, I couldn’t get over the size of the chick’s feet, they seemed so huge for a small body, I’m sure they will grow into them!
      Margot Koster certainly has an amazing number of flowers. The Clematis on the next post has just started flowering, it is called Abundance and certainly lives up to its name.
      In the past I have always done hardwood cuttings of roses in the autumn and they have been very successful. If you use firm wood, the thickness of a pencil and just remove the bottom few leaves, put into a slit in the garden, covering the lower half with soil, or round the edge of a pot, water well then leave them. By next spring, roots should have formed where the old leaves were. This time I thought I would try tip cuttings, like I would with Penstemons, so far 2 are looking happy but 2 not so happy. If only one succeeds then I shall be happy, if they don’t succeed then I will do hardwood cuttings in the autumn, a belt and braces job! I think if you are planning to take New Dawn down, I think your best bet would be to wait until autumn and do lots of hardwood cuttings, then at least one should take.

      • Anna says:

        Oh thanks so much for the advice on taking rose cuttings Pauline which is much appreciated. Looking at my ‘New Dawn’ last week I felt my resolve weaken but I will have to bring myself to be hard -hearted when all the flowers are done and dusted.

        • Pauline says:

          That’s ok Anna, hope I’ve helped! My tip cuttings haven’t worked so I will take some hardwood cuttings in the autumn from my Rose Snow Goose. When the time comes for you to take your cuttings, just gather your courage and cut, there is nothing to lose!

  5. Angie says:

    As has been said, the rose/clematis combo is wonderful. A perfect match!
    I have read that roses take quite easily if you just pop them in the soil and let them get on with it. My sister in law asked me just the other day to take a cutting from my rambler on the back fence. I’ll get round to it just as soon as it decides to flower. I hope your cuttings area success. If mine fail, I’ll be asking for tips.

    • Pauline says:

      I have found hardwood cuttings the easiest Angie, but thought I would try tip cuttings for a change, I’ll have to wait and see if they are successful.

  6. debsgarden says:

    So it seems all babies wake up at 4:00 a.m.! I love the rose and clematis combination you show. You have a real talent for flower and foliage combinations.

  7. Matt says:

    Awww – the baby bird is just too cute! I love your poppy – that orange is just amazing! The roses always look so lovely at this time of year – the delicate pink looks great next to the purple clematis

    • Pauline says:

      It was very big for a baby bird, I’m used to them a lot smaller Matt! The roses have never been better, this seems to be a fantastic year for them. I will just enjoy them all, even though it means a lot more deadheading!

  8. Frank says:

    The chick is adorable with his unimpressed hungry look. A little rude though with his early wakeup call!
    The trellis looks great. I should also be taking a few cuttings but have yet to plant so many other things. It is a busy time of year isn’t it? I feel like I should be sitting back enjoying it all already 🙂

    • Pauline says:

      Thank goodness the big baby bird has moved away a bit with it’s parents, so I’m not waking up at 4 am any more Frank!
      I still have a load of plants to plant, I know where they are all going, it’s just that I have to weed the borders first, I’m getting there, but there is still a lot to do. Maybe by September I’ll be able to have a sit down!

      • Frank says:

        The heat will do me in before September (assuming it ever returns) but I’m also forging my way through the weeds before I plant. It’s just that they seem to pop up faster than I can get them!

        • Pauline says:

          We have temperatures coming this week Frank that will just make me sit in the shade! In London it is going to be up in the 40’s, a bit less for here in the SW, but still too hot to work in the garden. My borders in the shade always look a lot better than sunny ones, as they get more work done on them. I know the feeling about the weeds, they pop up as soon as I move onto the next border!

  9. Sandra says:

    Hello Pauline,

    The bird is very cute and it is a beautiful story. The flowers are gorgeous as well! It is amazing here.

    Cheers, Sandra

    • Pauline says:

      Nice to hear from you Sandra and thanks for leaving a message. The baby bird was certainly different and very large for one needing to be fed by its parents. Glad you enjoyed the flowers here!

      • Sandra says:

        Thank you Pauline for your nice words. I love everything here and to read your post. I have subscribed to your posts and started following you.
        Wishing you a nice week, Sandra

        • Pauline says:

          Thank you so much for subscribing, I think it will be good talking gardening with you!. This week is going to be very hot, the wind is coming up from Africa, making the temperatures much higher than they would normally be. I think I will just rest in the shade!

  10. sally says:

    Hi Pauline,
    You know what Shakespeare said about roses…..and yours are very beautiful….especially the rose and Clematis combination…….so romantic! It’s so interesting to me that the Poppies have passed here and yours are just starting……your plants seem ahead of ours most of the time……go figure!
    Happy Gardening!

    • Pauline says:

      Oriental poppies have finished Sally, it’s now the turn of the annuals. I love roses and clematis together, they seem just made for each other!

  11. catmint says:

    love the combo of pale pink roses and the darker pink clematis. Very cute baby rook. Enjoyable post.

    • Pauline says:

      The rose was supposed to stay on the other side of the pergola Catmint, but it had other ideas. When I saw how nice they are together, I now just let her do her own thing!

  12. snowbird says:

    Looking at the pic of baby bird I would have to go with a Jackdaw chick, although I see it has also been identified as a rook. Most chicks of that age have white beaks like that, watch for a grey head as it gets older, that will clear it all up as sometimes it’s hard to call from pics…..but I’ll put my money on a jackdaw!
    Oh…..that rose and clematis combination id a real winner, how very beautiful!xxx

    • Pauline says:

      Thank you, I’m thinking Jackdaw too Dina, from the noise they are making. We also have crows here and the noise is so different.
      Roses and clematis seem to be made for each other, I’m glad the rose decided to climb over to join the clematis on the other side of the pergola!

  13. Helle says:

    Hi Pauline, seems there is a bit of disagreement concerning the chick. I’m in the jackdaw camp, immediately thought jackdaw when I saw the photo. The blue eyes plus that they nest in a tree hole, rooks don’t do that. The bill does look rather pale, but I think that’s more to do with the light in the photo than the actual colour.

    • Pauline says:

      I’m glad you agree with jackdaw Helle, it was the fact that they were in a hole in an oak that first made me think so, a rook would be in a rookery surely? When I looked in my bird book the only one with blue eyes was a jackdaw, so I think we can assume it is a jackdaw.

  14. Peter/Outlaw says:

    What an adorable chick even at 4 a.m. Your pink/pink rose and clematis combination is beautiful. (So many madams – what kind of garden are you running? 🙂 Gorgeous little poppy! Oh that these beautiful days of summer could last indefinitely. Of course, I say that about spring and fall as well, it’s just that season that starts with a “W” that could fly faster!

    • Pauline says:

      Thank goodness Peter, the chick has now grown and can find food for itself, so I’m sleeping a lot better! I do have rather a lot of madames don’t I, this is the problem when they come from France! The weather is perfect at the moment, not too hot, a few showers every few days to keep the plants and me happy, but I’m still chasing weeds!

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