The green of Marrakech is concentrated in the courtyard gardens and so are the birds. At dawn this explodes in song. Sparrows, House Buntings and Bulbuls are the main players. This is the courtyard of the Riad Laila, a lovely oasis in the intense business of the city.
The courtyard gardens of Morocco are a delight, often full of both fruit trees and flowers and, it seems, tortoises. I met Fatima in the town of Taliouine, south of the Atlas Mountains. She was a tortoise of enterprise although she did not always get her way.
When I was planting my new flower garden in September the bed next to me was full of Devil's Bit Scabious in flower. Each plant was buzzing and humming with Hoverflies, Butterflies and Bees. My hope is that by next Summer all the flower garden will be the same.
Every artist needs to pause from work. I find it makes a huge difference to my working day to sit for a while in my courtyard full of flowers. Especially as the year is ebbing and each moment of sunshine becomes more precious.
Autumn sunlight has been catching in the dew of early morning, etching the outlines of flowering grasses and spider's webs.
As an artist I see my garden as part of my working practice, but rarely show the working side of this. Here is the new flower garden I am planting, with the tools I use. All in the Autumn sunshine. And a bit of breeze getting in on the act, sorry for sound quality.
This hot-rock Iguana in Southern Mexico was strutting his stuff while the drums were beating.
The blue hydrangeas growing on the river bank form a lovely backdrop for dragonflies and damselflies. Most spectacular are the Beautiful Demoiselles with the hydrangea Zorro.
In the heat of the day some moths are sharing the riches of the White Buddleia with the many happy butterflies. The stars of this video include the Silver Washed Fritillary, Silver Y Moth and Hummingbird Hawkmoth.
Loving colour, and gardening on the wild side, I am surrounded by flowers. Bees have taken notice and become my near companions in both garden and house, although when it comes to accommodation they are very discreet in their ways and we live in harmony.