Cees Fun Foto Challenge…Soft and Pastel Colours


Rhododendrons are usually big and blousy oozing with bold colours….

But when they are more restrained their soft pastel colours just seem to have that added sparkle… a touch of class!


Just my suggestions for this weeks Cees Fun Foto Challenge – Soft & Pastel Colours…


Pop along to Cees Blog via this link :- https://ceenphotography.com/2019/12/03/cees-fun-foto-challenge-pastel-soft-colors/


3rd December

(C) David Oakes 2019



A mix of summer and autumn weather for the middle weekend of September


Saturday was just fabulous, warm, no breeze and sunny.  The low sun shedding shadows that get longer each passing day.  The woodland canopy just a little thinner than last week.  The Ferns and bracken now drying and soon will turn to a crisp brown that will rustle in the winds to come.

Whilst Saturday was perfect all day, Sunday alternated in virtually a blink of the eye, from sun  to dull grey,  in a cycle that continued till nightfall (then it rained).  Overall a relaxing weekend,  it was good to get out and about observing the small changes in the countryside and garden.

In the garden Tortoiseshell Butterflies are having a feeding frenzy on the Sedum sharing the nectar and pollen with Bees and Hover Flies…its a busy spot.


  Now we all know the saying ‘here today gone tomorrow’ ..well how about ‘here yesterday gone today’ ….  Both the Rose and the Blue sky!

At least Sunday finished with what looked like the making of a nice evening, bright and encouraging as it was… it didn’t last.


I wonder what the weather has instore for this coming week…will it be more of the same or the start of a real shift into autumn…..who knows, not me.

16th September

(C) David Oakes 2019


Sunny Start to September……


The first week of September has given us some fabulous sunny mornings… perfect for Golf lovers to get their rounds in whilst its quiet.

In the woods the shadows are longer as the sun sinks lower in its axis.  The canopy is also starting to thin allowing this autumnal sun to reach those parts that have been so shady across the summer.


Berries are ripening, seeds are setting, petals dropping yet still Summer teases us.

The truth that the seasons are on the move comes towards the end of the day when those longer shadows and a bright evening sun, give the garden an ‘evening look’ long before the sun vanishes for the day….   and the temperatures make a marked drop


Yep…not a bad start to September, OK we did get the odd shower but perhaps that was much needed.

We should of course  think of those caught in the dreadful and very tragic weather conditions that have struck the Bahamas.  Hurricane Dorian now continues northwards up the coast of North America reeking even more destruction.  A reminder that none of us are in control of our own destinies.

7th September

(C) David Oakes 2019

Its been a strange summer…..


Its has not been a bad summer, nor has it been brilliant…it has been a little like the Curates Egg…. Good in Places!

The extremes from extreme heat to monsoon like rains did bring us a few surprises in the gardens, mostly good surprises. However there have been some disappointments.  The heavy rains did cause some damage with there ferocity.  The sun really stimulated lots of lush growth. The colours have been spectacular…but there have been some disappointing results.  Some of those plants we have as staples of the summer garden took off fast, growth was much thicker than usual, then sadly have ‘flowered themselves out’ long before they would normally vanish for another year….. petunias long gone

The Hydrangeas have been the stars, particularly pleasing this season.  During the heatwave they did for the most part survive that scorching heat. The large lush bushes then had to stand firm against the heavy rains, rains which were often accompanied by high winds.  Of all the colours the White varieties seem to have come thru the best of all…  but here we are nearly at September, and whilst some Hydrangea’s look stressed, most will be here till the first frosts…..

But till autumn arrives lets continue to enjoy the colour of summer and the first hints of seasonal change…. just thinking of all those berries and fruits to come..

24th August

(C) David Oakes 2019