Have I mentioned that our allotment site is protected as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSI), because it hosts a colony of slow worms? Here's one we found the other day. Despite the name, they are actually quite quick so we were pleased to get this pic.
They hide under the old carpet on the paths between the beds. So some of them get trodden on I'm afraid. I hope it's not illegal to accidentally tread on a protected creature - I feel guilty enough!
Now here's a painted lady butterfly, one of the hordes that have made their way to our shores on hot winds from the Sahara in recent weeks. They're looking a lot brighter now, the ones we observed earlier in the season were quite faded after their long journey.
And last but not least some rather less welcome visitors - the dreaded blackfly on the broad beans. Stubborn little critturs and I now have no broad bean crop (not one harvested!)
My fellow tenants keep making comments about how I haven't got a crop because I haven't sprayed, but I usually do get a small crop despite lack of spray. And I happen to know that Bill sprayed my beans about three weeks ago "because I had a bit left in me bottle, and it seemed a waste". No he doesn't use organic spray. And now they've moved onto my runner beans as well, which are usually only mildly affected.
I looked at sprays in a DIY store in Dorking yesterday, but as they were marked "dangerous to bees" I bottled out. I know they all think that my blackfly will infect their plants but if their sprays are so effective, why should they worry?
What do you think? Are the blackfly worse this year than last spring in your experience?