Autumn – so soon?

The last few days have been strange and sad, as we try to accept the death of a dear friend. It is difficult to settle to tasks, but I find hard labour is as good a way to consume time as anything else. So I have been clearing the path, closely supervised by a young robin (who refuses to stay in shot). Though you can just about spot him/her taking time out for a bath (in the second photo).

IMG_0516DSCN6298 - Version 2The yellow (Japanese) quinces are all over the path and with my nose to the ground, they smell delicious. This scent, along with that of the lemon balm (a welcome weed in our garden) is very comforting.

In the nearby playing field, it looks as though autumn base already arrived. IMG_0514 While this Rhododendron Yakushimanum is convinced it is spring.DSCN6299 And the roses (Octavia Hill, Papa Meilland and Wollerton Old Hall) are making the most of the end of summer.DSCN6306 DSCN6308 DSCN6305 Meanwhile this fairy-like fuchsia (magellanica molinae)  has taken over the path.DSCN6304 - Version 3And two of the three martin’s nests are on their third brood – I don’t remember seeing quite such big piles of droppings in past years – with the house painters due in a week’s time. I expect nature will sort things out without any help from us.

(Apologies to photographers (you know who you are) for the rough and ready snaps)