In my absence, the garden has been flourishing under Dave's care. Some of the plants are huge!
Above is our cardoon, which must be about eight feet tall. The bees love it.
One of the inulas, next to our patio, is taller than I am. These plants have been a huge (literally) surprise for us. Dave put three of them in the ground a year or two ago and this is the first season they've really reached their potential. The leaves are as big as a shoebox.
The purple loosestrife is blooming brilliantly....
...as are the red-hot pokers and the persicaria. These persicaria, with red flowers, bloom later in the summer than our pink ones, which appear in the spring. The bees love them all.
The Japanese anemones are blooming. I told Dave I know it's almost time to go back to school when the anemones bloom.
Here are our cosmos -- including the white one I rescued back in June.
And finally, our ragwort -- the weed that appeared of its own volition in the middle of our rose garden -- is as tall as I am, topped by a mass of bright yellow flowers. (Still no caterpillars, though!) The roses are sending up new growth, too.
I haven't seen the garden foxes since my return, but I heard them barking and quarreling last night just before I fell into what might have been the best night's sleep of my life. I couldn't sleep right away, but about 11 p.m. I went unconscious until 7:45 this morning, Olga curled beside me. Terrific!