Devil's Tobacco

Firstly thanks to everyone who dropped by on my blip 'birthday' and posted such kind and supportive comments - I really can't stop blipping now! Thanks also for all the hearts and stars that propelled my turtle dove to the first page of the popular images - a long time since I reached such dizzy heights!

I probably won't get around to thanking everyone individually as life continues to be busy. I spent the morning dealing with a herbarium specimens from a Bramble ID and Training Day I helped organise back in late July. The afternoon was spent co-leading a guided walk round Lattersey NR with Pete, in blistering heat. 

Luckily  there were quite a lot of trees on site, so we walked fairly swiftly through the sunny areas and chatted to our audience all about the plants and insects in shady spots, which made it just about bearable. The walk was part of a Wildlife Trust Open Day, and before we arrived there'd been very few visitors. But about fifteen minutes before our walk started, lots of people arrived, so we ended up with a large group ranging from babies to people in their mid-eighties. I was so shattered afterwards that I had to have a short nap on the lawn!

I took my camera with me, but there was no time to take any photographs, so this is an EB from the garden. Four years ago I saw some magnificent Devil's Tobacco Lobelia tupa at Felbrigg Hall in Norfolk, and the following spring I grew some plants from seed. This year they've flowered for the first time - not quite as magnificent as the Felbrigg specimens, partly because they're still growing in a pot, but still rather wonderful, even in bud. Next spring I think I'll plant them out in the garden, but need to find a sheltered bed with deep moist soil - not easy in our garden. Apparently they can grow to 4m in height, so perhaps I don't want the soil to be too fertile!

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