Sunday, April 28, 2024

28/04/2024 Taking a break from Namibia, here are a few photos from 'back home' in April

 The maximum temperature in the Charente today is 15⁰C, minimum 13⁰C.  Rain last night measured 16mm.  South/West wind of 23km/h with gusts up to 44km/h.  No change for the next week so it seems.

01/04/2024 the first tree peonies in flower. This was sold to me as Blue Sapphire '(Paeonia x suffruticosa) I am not convinced though it looks similar.

02/04/2024 Orange Tip (male) (Anthocharis cardamines). It refused to open its wings!

04/04/2024 Buttercup and Goldenrod Crab Spider (Misumena vatia).

05/04/2024 A selection of wild flowers in the garden.
Top - Bulbous Buttercup (Ranunculus bulbosa Ranunculaceae).
Bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta).
Cowslip (Primula veris).
Red Clover (Trifolium pratense).
Bottom - Common or lawn daisy (Bellis perennis)
Lesser Celandine (Ficaria verna).
Sweet violet (Viola odorata).
Large Cuckoo Pint or Large Lords and Ladies (Arum italicum).

07/04/2024 A species of Click Beetle (Cidnopus pilosus) that appears to have eaten a whole buttercup!

29/04/2024 Spanish Bluebells (Hyacinthoides hispanica).

10/04/2024 Apple blossom and a bee, nope I do not know which one.

10/04/2024 Apple Blossom just opening. Granny Smith (Malus domestic).

10/04/2024 Bellis perennis with another bee that I have not been able to ID.

10/04/2024 A Hairy Footed Flower Bee (Anthophora plumipes) on Ground Ivy (Glechoma hederacea).

11/04/2024 European Glow-worm (Lampyris noctiluca)....

As above

12/04/2024 Yellow tree peony (Paeonia lutea var ludlowii).

13/04/2024 Sunset.

15/04/2024 Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera).

17/04/2024 Gray heron (Ardea cinerea). Spotted as we drove past a dam, standing, but by the time we had stopped and opened the car window......

17/04/2024  - 1936 Hotchkiss...
Interesting car .   It is a French car with a right-hand drive. Apparently, all French cars were built at one time with the steering wheels on the right. The highway code was finalised and promulgated in 1921, with driving on the right enshrined in law. It took some time though before all models changed the steering wheel to the left. Further info on the car if you are interested is here.

17/04/2024 Fields of Rape (Brassica napus).

17/04/2024  Not sure why the large turkey is here on the corner but this is France!  A drive-by photo.

17/04/2024 I just liked this photo of the windsock.

21/04/2024  Hoverfly (Eristalis Tenax or Similis) possibly the latter on the flowers of the Red Robin shrub  (Photinia × fraseri).

22/04/2024  As above on the Hazel tree.

23/04/2024 another sunset just minutes before....

the new Pink Moon popped up on the other side of the house.

24/04/2024  Finally, I managed to get the wet grass that was knee-high when we arrived home back to looking more like a lawn.

25/04/2024 A rose bud that has been frozen in place like this for about 10 days.

26/04/2024  La Rochefoucauld Chateau. I have over the years put several photos on of the Chateau (follow the link for the history as from 980AD!) but I think this is the highest the water level has ever been that I have seen.  The restaurant on the left of the bridge (not in the photo) has had to close as it was flooded. It was where we celebrated my 80th in August last year.

As above taken from a different angle.

27/04/2024 Frog hopper (Cercopidae).

24/04/2024 Greenfly - there are around 5000 species of aphids.......

24/04/2024 Dock (Squash) bug maybe (Coreus marginatus).

24/04/2024 Similar spieces??....

24/04/2024  Squash (Dock) Bug (Coreus marginatus) ?

24/04/2024  Possibly the same as above.

24/04/2024  Vernal Shield Bug nymph (Peribalus strictus) ??

24/04/2024 Roman snail and edible (Helix pomatia).

28/04/2024 Finally the rosebud has opened 😃

I will be back with more Namibia Photos very soon.
Wishing you all a good and healthy week ahead.


  1. A gorgeous collection of photos, Diane, and I'm delighted to see that your garden is full of life, in spite of the dreadful weather that you have been experiencing. I was particularly pleased to see your Glow-worm images - I have never seen a Glow-worm.

    My very best wishes to you and Nigel. Thank you so much for your recent supportive kind words which were very much appreciated. Take good care - - - Richard

    1. Thanks Richard for the kind comment. I have only ever seen the glow at night before and not very often. I had no idea that they looked like this until I did research on the odd little fellow on our verandah!!

      Take care and recover well. I am delighted that you were in and out on the same day as you had been told. Very best wishes to you both, Diane

  2. So many amazing shots, Diane. Have been seeing lots of blue/whitebells here. That vintage car looks so gorgeous.

    1. Thanks Angie I have also had white bells here. That car is very special it is amazing condition. Keep well, Diane

  3. Hi Diane - as Richard says ... they are all wonderful photos ... were the bugs on spinach/chard? Love that veggie!! I remember glow worms, I'd no idea what they looked like, from the 1950s in Surrey ... but all those photos are just delightful to see. We had a talk on bee-keeping on Friday ... and one thing I remember (I was doing other admin things as the talk was going on) that bees are particularly attracted to dandelion flowers; the other thing was bee-keeping and horses don't go together well. You've done really well to get that lawn back to a manageable level - you and us have had copious amounts of rain. Wonderful to see your home - and amazing how high the river is ... enjoy the coming days - cheers Hilary

    1. Thanks Hilary for the lovely comment. Yes you are right the bugs were on the chard, a vegetable that we have growing all year round. These are starting to bolt but will be edible for another month and then the next lot will be almost ready. We have a lot of different bees here but I am always cautious as I react very badly to their sting, though many of them do not sting I am never sure which is which. It is still raining and the next fortnight does not look much better :-(( It makes gardening difficult when we have this much. Keep well, cheers Diane

  4. Thanks for your usual exquisite series of pictures, Diane, and the diligence you provide in identifying them for us. I am a little curious about the Goldenrod Crab Spider. It doesn’t look quite right (I am far from proficient with spiders let me hasten to add) and here they are either white or yellow, seeming to be able to adjust their colour to the substrate. But I have never seen a brown one. I know it is a species of Holarctic distribution, and perhaps there is colour variation too. I shall have to do a little research! Give my best to Nigel. Gros bisous de ton ami canadien- David

    1. Hi David the first thought was Synema globosum or Napoleon spider but inaturalist disagreed with me, so I went along with them. Best wishes to you both, bisous Diane

  5. You always remind me of the symmetry and perfection is the smallest creatures. Such glorious blooms too. Great post.

    1. Thanks Marie, I love it when spring comes along the the bugs appear, always good for photos so long as they do not eat too much of the garden!!

  6. Replies
    1. Thanks you Kelly for your visit and especially for the kind comment. Cheers Diane

  7. Delightful series of images Diane! Your photos are exquisite!

    1. Thanks Denise always good to hear from you. Cheers Diane

  8. Looks like Spring has reached your garden with the beautiful blooms and an amazing array of bugs. Love the Chateau too but sorry to hear about the flooding .

    1. It might look like it but it certainly does not feel like it. I am cold every day!!! Cheers t'other Diane

  9. Wonderful set of pictures - and the giant turkey made me smile! Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

    1. Thanks Stewart, I also had to laugh at the turkey guess it has some meaning but it is beyond me. Hope all is well cheers Diane

  10. So many cool shots! Those sunset pictures are absolutely stunning.

    1. Thanks Pam I love taking sunsets but with the dreadful weather this year There have not been that many! I hope all is wel with you Diane

  11. Son unas preciosas fotografías. Saludos.

    1. Gracias por tu visita y el comentario. Saludos para ti también. Diane

  12. Replies
    1. Thanks so much for the kind comment, it is very welcome. Diane


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