I’ve developed something of an obsession with bees this summer. If they are really endangered, then so are we, maybe I wanted to just really notice them, or maybe I just like bees.





Buzzing bees is a sound of summer. I love to watch bumble bees work, filling their pollen sacks. I have to confess, to take these pictures I did not take the dog, she lacks patience when it comes to photography!!


Balsam Bashing?



The Himalayan balsam is now in full flower. It’s taking over the upper end of the lane, squeezing out the native species with its dense growth of foliage and flowers. I find myself conflicted about this. In lots of places people are balsam bashing, ripping up the plant to let the native plants re-establish. The farmer’s wife is a bee keeper. She says the bees love the balsam and they produce wonderful clear honey. I don’t want yo harm the bees, but I would like less balsam and more native flowers, as there are further down the riverbank. I need more information please…bees vs. balsam??


Dog rose

A cold, wet day today! Feeling autumnal not mid summer at all but the grey skies and rain meant the white and yellow dog rose stood out against the damp hedgerow.
Dog roses were one of my favourite flowers as a child. We had a hedgerow as you walked out of the yard gate that was full of them in June. Then in the autumn the red rose hips promised itchy seeds to put down my brother’s back or inside someone’s wellingtons. The easy pleasures of childhood pass away to memory so quickly.
I also liked the huge Pom-Pom heads of the hog weed and the forget me not’s blue.
The dog was more impressed by a large black stick I wrestled from under a hedge. After that, my hands were too filthy to take any more pictures. The best thing about wet days is the solitude. Even if there are other people around I am encased in the hooded world of my raincoat.




Insects and sunshine



It was evening we we finally went for a walk today. The sky was grey and it was windy. I wore my winter coat and boots, I wish I’d worn my hat. I’d had an awful day. Nothing of consequence had happened but I’d spent hours arguing with broadband providers who failed to provide broadband, then travelled to Lancaster twice to sort out my phone. Time gone!
So I was ready to put one foot in front of the other and think of other things.

Because it was windy and cold there were no flies or bees or anything. There were sticks. Hunting sticks is often a feature of walking because the dog loves sticks. Our walks are punctuated by me throwing sticks into the stream and the dog swimming out to retrieve. Retrieve May not be the correct verb, she finds the stick and rips it into smaller sticks. I feel retrieve implies she return the stick to me, which she doesn’t and as a result I spend lots of time looking at the ground and noticing things that are not sticks, like flowers and insects. The two do go together, especially in the spring. I’m not interested in insects but I do like flowers and noticing the absence of insects made me think about how much more I would notice the absence of flowers.