We had our first little reality check on the advancing season this past weekend. The hot and humid weather we've survived for the past two months suddenly vanished, leaving us with single-digit (Celsius) temperatures, accompanied by stiff winds and rain. Our area was spared the worst of both wind and rain, with the south of the province taking the big hit on that front, but it was still a jolt. We briefly turned the thermostat from the air conditioning setting to heat, since the house was getting a bit chilly. Today was clear and sunny but a little cool for August, and by the end of the week we will apparently be back to hot and humid. I'll try to remember not to complain.
I enjoy sunflowers, both for their visuals and for their contribution to the insect and bird life of our yard. In the spring I went as far as actually buying sunflower seeds at the garden centre, but they have failed to impress, being slow to grow, short, and with very small heads. On the other hand, the sunflowers planted by the birds who frequent our feeder have done splendidly.
Shot one shows one of the volunteers, with its collection of happy bees of various sorts. The bird-planted sunflowers are all tall and very sturdy, with heads that are a good foot / 30 cm or so across. Next year I don't think I'll bother buying any and will just hope that the birds make good choices in where they let the seeds fall.
When I'm not riding (Alpac is getting a month off just now) I tend to go to the barn in the early evenings. As the sun works its way gradually south, we get a lovely warm light shining in on the horses at the west end of the stables. Shots two and three are ones I took one evening last week.
The bars on the front of the stalls give a quite convincing zebra effect.
I've written before about how wonderful the daylilies (indeed, all the lily types in our yard) have been this year. Today I got the last shipment from the company that has supplied my wonderful collection of lilies over the years. After thirty-five years in business, they are shutting down. Today my final order came in the mail, and I was quite taken with the visuals of the box, which I am sharing here. Inside are twenty-five assorted day-lily corms, of various styles and colours. They were on offer for an extremely reasonable price, but as such are a "take what we send you" purchase, so until I get the first flowers on them (I hope that will be next year) I won't know exactly what I've got. I do know they will be hardy, healthy and good quality, so I'm happy enough to be surprised with the details.
Here is one example of the many daylilies currently in bloom in the back yard.