It’s A Small World ~ Over The Garden Fence

Most of you who come here often will know that over our garden fence beside  the field path we have been encouraging a wilderness garden to flourish. Most of it is not on our land, and so we call it ‘the guerrilla garden’, referencing a movement that began some years back and involved certain UK citizens going around, often under the cover of darkness, establishing gardens in derelict and unsightly corners of public spaces.

Our version was aimed at encouraging bio-diversity, mostly of the insect kind. It is wholly unplanned and includes some cultivated herbaceous species i.e. those that had grown too uncontainable in our small garden and had to be set free, the crab apple that had to be moved when the garden steps were being rebuilt, wild flowers sown and invaded, and quite a few weeds. I don’t do much to it beyond a big tidy up in the autumn, though I do have to tackle the fieldside margins now and then to stop the thistles and brambles from taking over.

Anyway, the ensuing floral jungle is a great source of pleasure for six months of the year, and once you start peering over the fence to study it whole hours can pass. So here’s a glimpse of some of what goes on there . I should perhaps warn you before you set off, the photo of the Mullein Moth caterpillar is very much larger than life. Also, who can spot the crab spider in the close-up of the Giant Mullein flowers? And anyone who has more accurate identifications of the ‘?beetles’ and hoverflies (Pete?) please shout up.













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Lens-Artists: Detail This week Patti sets the challenge.

For more about the Lens-Artists photo challenge go HERE


66 thoughts on “It’s A Small World ~ Over The Garden Fence

  1. This is a marvelous selection. Colour galore and great insect shots.
    As this is your home patch I’ll let Pete offer his take on the entomology. Although I will take a stab at the overfly on the Valerian.
    Eristalis Tenax?

  2. Beautiful shots Tish.You done real good on the insect ids.
    The hairy bug is: Hairy Shieldbug (Dolycoris baccarum).
    The hoverfly with the dark stripe is most likely the Drone Fly (Eristalis tenax) as our dear Ark has acurately stated.
    The hoverly in mid-flight and the one on the Ox-Eye is the Marmalade Hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus).
    The last hoverlfy is hard to tell but is Syrphus sp.

  3. This sounds such a good idea – planting things where there aren’t any and doing it secretly? Love it. Beautiful details all over, and thanks for the entomology!

  4. How wonderful to have a wild garden next to your fence. I love these image of the bugs, beetles, and the caterpillar. Thank you for sharing the beauty of nature with us. 🙂

    1. Many thanks, Tina. Have also encouraged similar ‘planting’ along our neighbours’ back fence – with the landowner’s permission – so our guerrilla enterprise is only a tad roguish. But this year a neighbour across the road has put flowering plants all round our local post box because she was fed up with the weeds due to the Council neglecting the space. We like her style, and posting a letter is now something of an event – checking on how the post box garden is faring.

  5. I love the wild garden and its inhabitants and the idea of surreptitiously planting gardens. Thanks for showing several shots of the “whole” as opposed to only the lovely details.


    1. When you think about it, there are so many spaces that could be turned into gardens. When we lived in Nairobi, there were unofficial gardens everywhere – road reserves, traffic islands – the urban poor farming wherever they could find a corner.

    1. It’s heartening that the younger generations seem to be pretty aware of the need. Lots of making of ‘bug hotels’ at our local girl guide and scout HQ

      1. Yes my grandkids have made them too but the bugs are yet to move in. You’ve inspired me to get out and prepare a garden bed for spring flowers. I’ll do it on a scrap of land out the back of this place. 🙂

    1. The thing is, it doesn’t really take very much to change a little spot for the better. The hedge that was there originally was mostly made up of Snowberry, a thug of a tangly alien shrub, doubtless imported originally for its white autumn berries, but pretty sterile most of the year. Don’t even remember the birds using it for cover. We felt we’d been let out of confinement when it was dug out, though bits of it still pop up.

      1. That’s so true.
        I spent years seeing our property as an undifferentiated mass that was too big to do imagine now I’d change. It was my mum, when she was still able to visit us, who started making small changes.
        The wisdom of our mothers!

  6. How very lovely. I like the corn cockle and the pink toadflax. I might have to invest in some wild flower seeds to populate my Cornish hedge!

    1. The purple toadflax grows like a weed around our garden and was here when we came – along with the columbines. I let them both do their thing. The pink toadflax, though, appeared last year in the front garden by the road, so I’m encouraging it a bit.

    1. Not sure which one you mean. There’s purple toadflax with thin spires of tiny snap dragon types flowers – also a pink version. The flat out coronet of spiky blue-mauve leaves is sea holly.

  7. As I scrolled down across the caterpillar it seemed to be moving! … the wonders of optical illusions. 😀
    … gorgeous photos all. 😀
    … P.S. I finally got around to trying your cracker recipe, with an extra cup full of chopped up dates,raisins, and pecans,and 2 tablesp of maple syrup … made them a bit thicker than your recipe … baked as long as you said … and they are delicious!!!

  8. For some odd reason I cannot comment on your Knitting post. Weird.
    Anywho … here’s wot I wrote

    What a fabulous idea and some truly excellent creations.
    ”Knit one pearl one ….”

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