It’s still Saturday in my time zone

So here are my six, at the 11th hour, after a few weeks of being too busy to manage to blog:

1, white flowers: Anemone Honorine Jobert (I’m reasonably sure), and the chives flowering right up against the fence.

2, the glorious exuberance of the front beds. Someone on my blogroll said she appreciated the subtle color of sedums in her fall garden. I think she must have meant the pinky-brown sedums that I had at the old house; there is nothing subtle about these, and the colors gladden my heart every time I see them. Look how well the globe amaranth Truffula fits in:

I love the way the lantana starts out red before opening.

3, fungus amongus:

4, the purples: lavender asters in the wild bit, 

and a tamer bushier aster (I think) along with another Honorine Jobert:

Now back to the vegetable garden for 5, a mess of marigolds and tomato vines, with lots of green tomatoes; I fear they may never ripen, as this patch is no longer getting any sun:

And 6, a leggy nasturtium, which would be happier with sandier soil and more sun:

When I’m not working (teaching online takes a terrible amount of grading and writing and organizing and transferring files around), I’m plotting garden changes. There’s a sunny area of lawn near the house that I wanted to use for a cottage-style flower garden, as it gets full sun most of the day, even now that much of the garden is more shaded. But since the vegetable patch only gets sun in full summer, maybe the sunnier patch should become a vegetable garden. That would mean a new rabbit-proof fence, lots of digging, ugh. And then what would I do with the former vegetable garden? A friend suggested having a potager near the house, mixing veg and flowers, and continuing to use the vegetable patch for vegetables that would be harvested in full summer; that is an option. Thinking.

Six on Saturday is hosted by the Propagator, who is now well into Sunday. I expect he’s used to me showing up late, by now.


Now that the Tour de France has finally finished, summer (in my mind) is nearly over, and it’s time to concentrate on classes and getting ready for the fall.

How did it get to be week 5 of the semester?

Covid-time is a strange, strange thing in so many ways.

It’s starting to look a bit like fall, with some trees blushing a bit at the tips of branches, and shade falling very differently across the garden. There are plenty of green tomatoes still in my mostly-neglected vegetable patch, and I don’t know if they’ll ever ripen, because they aren’t getting any sun anymore. When we moved, I was delighted to find that the garden included an area safely fenced against rabbits where I could try my hand at vegetables. There’s also a patch of lawn, near the house, that gets sun nearly all day in summer, and still gets a good bit of sun even now, that I had my eye on for a cottage-style flower garden. But now I’m thinking that if I want vegetables, that patch should be where they go, and I’ll have to move the anti-rabbit fencing, and then what do I do with the erstwhile vegetable patch? Decisions, decisions, plus a lot of digging at some point.

“It is wonderful how much news there is when people write every other day; if they wait for a month there is nothing that seems worth telling.” O. Douglas, Penny Plain, start of chapter VI (reading on Kindle, so no page reference). I’ve been reading a lot of O. Douglas lately. Some of her books are available free on Project Gutenberg, others are cheap in the Kindle store. They are set mainly in Scotland, with a few scenes in London or elsewhere, and are lovely for scenery and the interaction of happy families. Romances often don’t quite work out; there’s a recurrent trope of the woman who remains faithful to a dead husband or fiancé (well, they’re written and mainly set during or after WWI, so this is probably catering to readers who suffered a bereavement in the war and like to see it glamorised a bit). Sometimes they’re a little preachy, but although many of the characters are related to Presbyterian ministers, for the most part the religion isn’t heavy-duty, and at least, being Presbyterians, no one goes into a convent, as sometimes happens in novels of this era (looking at you, E. M. Delafield). There’s not enough about clothes, sadly, given the wonderful material available to someone whose characters wear country tweeds for day and dress for dinner, but descriptions of meals, especially tea, make them sound like children’s literature. There is a rather wonderful evening dress of parchment lace over cloth of gold, long-sleeved and high-necked, worn by Nicole Rutherfurd in Jane’s Parlour. Or was it The Day of Small Things? The books blur a bit, but they are excellent comforting reading if you like light fiction by British women from between the wars. They’re rather like Thirkell-of-the-north, but with great sympathy towards the New Rich of Glasgow, less mocking than Thirkell is about Sam Adams.

At any rate, I’ve nothing much to tell you besides that I’ve been busy with teaching, grading, committee work conducted via Microsoft Teams (ugh), and the usual routines of feeding cats, cooking, and so on, all sandwiched around coverage of cycling. It was a great  race this year but I’m glad it’s now over so I can believe that July is truly gone and fall is here. I’ve put together more bookshelves, and hope that before Halloween we’ll have retrieved and shelved the books I’ve been missing and want to have back.

Did Adam Blythe just say that?

We’re watching today’s Tour stage, a bit delayed (I do have a job), and the main commentators just checked in with the Man on the Moto to see what his views were. Adam Blythe said he was riding alongside Richard Carapaz, who “just stopped for a nature break, and woo-hoo! He’s looking good today!”

Um, what exactly were you referring to?

Maybe I’d rather not know which bit of Carapaz is looking good.

Maybe there are other viewers who do want to know.

Mr Hub Cap Diamond Star Halo has competition in the what-did-he-just-say category.

updated to add: Sir John suggested that nature breaks might be Blythe’s beat (so to speak) and now it seems he’s right, as on Blythe’s next report we heard about Hirschi’s break. Oh-kay.