Sunday, 2 August 2009

Sunday safari......

A dreadful photograph, but I just had to share. A stoat is hunting in my gardens. He is valued for keeping down rats, mice and rabbits. I have seen him most evenings and early in the morning. In the photograph he was just about to roll over and mark his territory. I watched from the conservatory as he raced around the garden checking the flower beds.....then he ran into the copse. I have never seen a stoat before....a first.....and in the garden, I am so pleased........
As soon as the sun came up, the bees arrived.......

and a white butterfly.......


I am in honey bee heaven. My neighbour is now a keeper of bees......she uses an holistic approach.......I have hundreds on the purple loosestrife......



and borage. I shall give her some plants next spring for her garden.
Rain yesterday was caught by a spiders web.......
There are many berries and haws in my garden....
Whilst summer is still very much in evidence.........
I am without doubt treading the path to autumn.....
The hips are as large as tomatoes.......
Lords and ladies hides in the shadows......
along with toadstools. There is plenty of food in the garden.......many birds and other creatures will come to feed.......I am ready for autumn.....it is my favourite season........

23 comments:

MissyM said...

I love the pictures of your bees. I have a lot of them, too. I have to google 'stoat' as I have never heard of it before.

Rose said...

The first bee looks like he is trying to put on a flowing red cape:) How exciting to have a beekeeper next door! Between the two of you, the bee population is sure to increase. I'm not quite ready for autumn yet--today is such a beautiful day that if the rest of the summer is like this, I will be happy.
I've never seen a stoat before either; maybe he will catch some of your rabbits--wouldn't that be nice?:)

Cheryl said...

Hi MissM....tks for your comment and welcome.....

Cheryl said...

Hi Rose....it iw wonderful having bee hives next door. I am awash with bees, delightful...

The stoat has already caught a rat and a rabbit kitten....I am hoping he will stay near my gardens and maybe breed next spring....now that would be good. He has the most gorgeous face......I am captivated by him.

As much as I love autumn, I am still enjoying our rather cool but sunny days......

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I had never heard of a Stoat before. I had to look it up. He must be needed since he was drawn to your garden.

Those rose hips are huge! So many wonders in your garden Cheryl.

Liz said...

Amazing to see you have a stoat Cheryl, and I'm not in the slightest bit jealous... ;)

Wonderful Bee/Butterfly shots, so relaxing and the weather has been lovely today... Such a shame it's Sunday night and I know I have work tomorrow :(

Becky said...

I have a bunch of borage this summer too and feel blessed!
Seems like such an old fashioned flower . . . i thee borage, give thee courage . . .
It is always a pleasure for me when i to visit your garden blog.

Wendy said...

I can't believe your rose hips are so big!! Wow! Your garden is in full harvest mode - especially for the critters.
How wonderful to have bee keepers next door. The bees will be happy to visit your garden.
I also don't know what a stoat is. Will have to google it too!
Happy sunday safari! I enjoyed the walk in your garden.

Naturegirl said...

Cheryl...let's enjoy the rest of the summer! I don't really look forward to autumn because you know what comes next!!
I have never heard of a "stout" seems to be a friend of your garden..getting those rats and mice and eeks..rabbits too!
I suppose that is the law of nature in your world.
Love your busy bees!!

ShySongbird said...

What a lovely post again Cheryl. How very special to have a Stoat in the garden, it should help with your Rabbit problem. Nature has a way of sorting things out, particularly I think if we humans don't interfere. I noticed last year when there were signs of Trichomoniasis in the garden the Sparrowhawk arrived and took the sickly birds and this year the same seems to be happening.

I too took photographs today of Rose Hips which looked like small Tomatoes! I'm sure they are bigger this year than usual. All the berries etc seem to have ripened earlier this time as well.

Cheryl I loved the previous post and your mother-in-law looks a very elegant lady. I love (and feel very comfortable) talking to elderly people they have such a wealth of experience and wisdom and lived through such difficult times compared to us, it is strange too how the elderly and the very young get on so well.

beckie said...

Cheryl, I love your new header, what is the flower? I am so glad you have bees of all kinds. I knew they would find your gardens irresistible. :)Your berries and rose hips will provide lots of food for the winter critters. And a stoat, wow! I googled it and found it a member of the Mustelidae family. It looked very mean. But how interesting-maybe you won't be bothered by rabbits so much now. Thank you for a lovely safari.

Q said...

Dear Cheryl,
I am so excited you have a Stoat in the garden! This is how the balance of nature works. Sometimes it takes a couple of years before the predators show up. I bet you have plenty of rabbits for his supper.
All the bees are a blessing. Having a bee keepers so near is a double blessing. Years ago I grew borage. A pretty and big herb. Nice to lay in the attic to keep the silverfish away!
Your gardens ARE preparing for Autumn. Huge hips already. I noticed in the woods a few sumac were starting to turn. It has been very cool and wet here too. This week Summer returns with heat and humidity!
Thank you once again for a delightful safari.
Sherry

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Hi Cheryl, I've planted borage twice but both times the rabbits have eaten it. I like its fuzzy stems, though. A stoat? I'd never even heard of that animal, but I Googled it. Cool that it's in your garden; they look very interesting, sort of a mix between badger, ferret, and, erm, something else! :)

Roses and Lilacs said...

What a short summer it was. August is often our hottest month but usually a poor one in the garden. Anytime after September 15 we can expect our first frost.

I had never heard of a stoat. I googled it and it is similar to weasels we have in this area.
Marnie

Cheryl said...

Hi Lisa....Mr P thought the hips were tomatoes (he is not a gardener)...I found it amusing though.
I love the stoat being here....he is delightful to watch.....quite playful.....

Cheryl said...

Hi Liz:I remember those days....longing for the weekends and in the blink of an eye they were over.
Getting older does have many advantages!! I am loving it......

Hi Wendy Autumn is definately on its way.....the leaves are turning slightly....and the nights are so cool....I must say I am loving it.


Hi Naturegirl....I do hope that you have an indian summer and can enjoy the warmth for a longer period.

It is natures way....the rabbit is out of control here and we need their natural predators to keep numbers down....it is just the way it is.....

Hi Jan.....you are quite right....the weak will always be taken by the predators (they are an easy kill)....this is good as it keeps stock healthy and strong.

My garden is summer/autumn it is quite weird, it seems so early....

My mother in law is indeed a lady....very genteel......very victorian in her manner. She is a dear and very special....I am very fond of her. We have had our differences but neither of us dwell.....we just move on.
I love to speak with the elderly....they have a lot to pass on....if only we listen.....

Cheryl said...

Dear Sherry....to have a bee keeper next door is wonderful. She made her hives in the spring and the local bee keeper bought her two swarms. She is holistic, so will not take all the honey. The bees will have a wonderful life with her......she is such a wonderful person with all she cares for. I consider myself lucky to have her as a neighbour.....

Thank you for the info re borage....I did not know that they would keep silver fish away. Living in a very old property I do get them in the kitchen from time to time. Now I know what to do.....

I loved you safari....especially the lovely photograph of the spider on its web.....

Cheryl said...

Hi Monica.....the rabbits never touch my borage....they do not like the stems....

The stoat turns white in the winter....but only in the North UK and Scotland. It is not cold enough in the South East. He hunts all year.....great.

Cheryl said...

Hi Marnie...gosh you autumn frosts come early.....brrrr

We have weasels here ....they are a smaller version of the stoat without the black tip to the tail....they are in the area to.....

NCmountainwoman said...

I've never heard them called stoats before but after looking them up I find that's the European name. How lucky. I hope you have a pair of them. Lovely photographs.

Cyndee Greene said...

I just had to see what a stoat looked like, so I googled it. They are so cute! How fun to get to see them in your garden...What does Poppi think??

Cheryl said...

Hi ncmountainwoman....so do I, a pair would be great....

Cheryl said...

Hi Cyndee....Poppi has not seen the stoat yet. When Riley and Poppi stay on Friday hopefully we may get a sighting......