Dear Readers, today was an ‘in tearing haste’ kind of day, but I am sticking to my resolution to at least walk around the block every lunchtime, and as usual I was glad that I did. There’s always something to notice if you can clear your head of spreadsheets and other shenanigans. First up, Mexican Fleabane is getting well established in the cracks and crevices in some front gardens, and very handy it is too – it flowers prolifically and the hoverflies love it. I am very fond of it myself, having a few windowboxes full of the stuff in the front garden.
Here it is advancing along the garden wall, before no doubt making a break for freedom along Lincoln Road.
Someone has some plain and simple honeysuckle in their hedge, and although there are fancier varieties, you cannot beat the old-fashioned plant for scent, even on a chilly-ish October day. I always have to stop for a quick sniff.
And how about this tree?
What a very fine specimen it is! This is a hornbeam, but not as we usually see it in the wood.
It’s a variety known as ‘fastigiata’ or ‘pyramidalis’ – it has a very neat conical shape more suited to a street tree than the sprawling giants of Cherry Tree or Coldfall Woods. However, according to Paul Wood in ‘London’s Street Trees’, a City of London hornbeam was found to be more biodiverse than any other tree in the Square Mile, and that includes the oak trees.
I am very happy to see that the bollard on the corner of Lincoln Road is still upstanding. This must be a record for its longest period in an upright position. Please don’t take that as a challenge.
And what else is there to see? An abundance of Michaelmas Daisies, another great plant for late summer/early autumn. The ones in my front garden are flowering and flowering, though most of them are very pale lilac/white rather than this lavender colour. I have one honeybee left who visits them regularly, but everyone else seems to have already called it a day.
And yes, I know that Virginia Creeper is a) common and b) a bit of a thug, but just look at it. How could the spirits not be lifted by the sight of all that red and copper?
And, finally, as I turn for home I have to take another photo of the rowan, so heavy with berries, so yellow of leaf. Wherever you are, I would really recommend getting outside, even if it’s just for fifteen minutes. This year has been so spectacular for berries and leaf color that it would be a shame to miss it.