At our local Wildlife Trust nature reserve there are swathes of Indian Balsaam, native to the Himalayas, which have just begun to flower. They have a distinctive smell – an aroma which at first might not seem so pleasant, but you get used to it, and I think it is a small price to pay for such lovely flowers. The plants have to be kept in check a fair bit, as they really like growing by the side of rivers and can take over if left to it. When the seed-buds form later in the autumn, it’s a favourite of children to merely touch a ripe pod and they will explode, seeds all scattering!
Below are photos of the jug-like flower of the Indian Balsaam, an insect wood pile, and low-growing Herb Robert, a lovely woodland plant.