caralockhartsmith

stories and illustration

A Bed of Wild Flowers

flowerbed

Some time back, in late spring, I bought a kind of thin tissuey roll, which was apparently embedded with wild flower seeds. We decided to use a raised bed in the vegetable garden for wild flowers, as we wanted to encourage bees and other insects. The roll was opened out and laid on the bed and thinly sprinkled with earth.  Nothing much happened, except a lot of grass seed from droppings from the bird table.  I thought what a waste of time. Another small packed of flower seed was bought and sprinkled.  Again nothing.  In desperation a packet of wild flower seed from Homebase was produced and this was added to the mix. Still nothing.  A friend who came a month or so ago, after seeing the rest of the verdant and blooming garden, said to me: “Your bit needs some attention,” as she thought it was just a few weeds in what should be a pristine bed.  Then suddenly, overnight it seemed, there were flowers. Plenty of them.  And bees and butteflies and numerous smaller insects. Even a corn cockle, very beautiful, apparently poisonous, which I didn’t photograph until it was on the way out. When I have finished the paintings  I am working on at the moment, for exhibition, I will hover about the wildflower patch with the hover flies and try and capture some insects enjoying the poppies et al. Meanwhile I will collect some poppy seeds, and look out for somewhere I can buy some corn cockles to cultivate for next year.

 

July 30, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Close Up: Dew on the Grass

desongrass2

July 21, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Close Up: Liddesdale Flowers

hedgrowflowers

July 21, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Close Up: Moth

butterfly

July 21, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Close Up: A Bee and Its Shadow

bee and shadow

A somnolent bee in my pathway let me examine it close up as it crawled slowly off the stones, with some very mild encouragement from myself, as it looked vulnerable where it was. This seems to have been  grand year for the bees, and at last the buddleias on Nun’s Walk are hosting clouds of  butterflies. My wildflower bed, from looking just like unweeded ground, has suddenly sprung into life, and has almost swallowed up the bird-table. This beautifully-accoutred bee, however, was down near the Tweed, on the English side, on what I think of as the Norham Path; though I would have to walk all day to get to Norham itself.

July 21, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

GooseGrass

GooseGrass

July 18, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Liddesdale Sheep

LiddesdaleSheep

I have been on another visit to the Liddel Valley – most of my photographs have been of flowers by the roadside, as I was interested in the variety in this hill-farming environment, and wanted to see how many different species of flowers I could see along a mile or so stretch of country road. This will need some sorting before I do my roadsideflowerblog; so instead, here are some Liddesdale sheep, on a sunny day, in a flowery field.

July 18, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Small Hill

smallhill

I was tempted to entitle this blog entry: “There is Green Hill Far Away”, but this small hill isn’t far away, and although at this season it is green, later in the year I have known it the colour of sand.  It’s hump is always appearing on the horizon, seen from different points-of-view. This July it looks very integrated – all that green, and the little tuft of trees on the top.

July 13, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Three Ducklings and a Stone

three ducklings

After the heavy rain, I saw a duck on the Tweed, flying from bank to bank, crying out in obvious distress. Perhaps her ducklings had gone missing.  Apparently herons can take them, though I suppose turbulent water might do it, or at least sweep them away.  But these three have survived fine, and are feeding on the weir just below Coldstream Bridge, which is just damp now as the water levels have gone right down. People and ducks walk along the weir, the herons stand at the end, looking into the water that swirls round the edge; and the other day I saw a solitary hooded crow, waddling about just beneath the Marriage House (eastern equivalent, in the old days, of Gretna Green), looking a tad out of place.

July 13, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blue Tweed

blue Tweed

 

July 12, 2014 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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