Monkey Flower

11.50 a.m., 30°C in the sun, 90% cumulus

AFTER LAST WEEK’S big clear out, the pond is now a bit of a blank canvas. Duckweed is beginning fill in the shady corner by the shed but this Frog was resting on the sunny side of the pond, in the corner next to this Monkey Flower, Mimulus. This variety is ‘Highland Orange’. You find the plant on riversides, so I thought it would be happy with the pot standing in the water at the edge of the pond. It’s the first plant I’ve added to the pond. More important, but proving rather elusive in the garden centres that I’ve visited so far, is oxygenating pondweed. That’s the first aquatic plant that I need to get established.

Pond skaters have been attracted to the open water. There were always a few on the limited scraps of open water that remained between all the water plants before we cleared out the pond but today there are 32 gliding around on the surface.

The pond reflects the changing sky and reacts to every movement of frogs hopping in and out or birds coming to drink. It’s a shame to have had to ruthlessly cleared out so many plants but the pond is now more of a centrepiece for the garden than it was when it blended in with all the surrounding vegetation and it looked like a thicket of flag irises.