We have a bit of a mix this week between the blooms and wildlife, we’ve had a bit of an explosion in butterflies – mainly the Peacocks, although still no Red Admirals and I’m thinking we’re unlikely to see any at all now this year. Also, there’s quite a marked decrease in Gatekeepers, I still had a lot compared to many, but I’m used to 30+ but this year I’d estimate numbers were closer to 15-20. Even last year we managed 30+ and it was so wet, so I wonder whether the late snows in spring impacted on them?
So, onto photos…
Really I ought to rename the borders, as realistically the upper tier should be the ‘Aster border’ as I have 4 species up there and only one now actually in the Aster border.
Ah yes, Teasel at last. After numerous seedings and no results last year I bought some wildflowers from Clumber Park, waited a year and here we go. Then, earlier this year low and behold I notice a Teasel growing on the edge of the Aster border! It’ll need moving, but I’ll probably be gone by then so will leave it to whomever moves in!
I was perhaps far too excited when I spotted wands on the Dierama… Three this year, I know that sounds rubbish but it’s the most yet and I haven’t had any at all for I think 2 years. So I’m thrilled.
With the drop in temperatures I’ve seen lots of Bees ‘sleeping’ or hiding on blooms to avoid the rain. Generally I poke them to try to get them to move on and find a safer/more suitable resting site. So the top left Bee was less than impressed with my poking and it was sticking its legs out at me – as they all do when I poke them 😉 However, you might want to click on the photo to enlarge and check out the leaf-cutter Bees mandibles (top right photo). Amazing.
Heeeeeey, look who’s back!!
I’ve been most impressed with the Ringlet numbers this year… Even if they were looking somewhat tatty over the last week or two. Shows what happens when they’re always chasing each other!
Cinnabar caterpillars are desecrating the Ragworts, not a problem after all that’s the very reason I’ve allowed them to seed around the garden. Hopefully next year their numbers will explode… I have so many caterpillars there’s no way I can count them all.
Just as I was trying to catch the Ringlet, look what landed right in front of me… A Small Tortoiseshell! Its colours are in stunning contrast to the pink Yarrow.
And then, as if the last shot wasn’t handy enough, it happened again!
The butterflies seem to change their plant preferences from year to year… Previously I’ve rarely seen them on Yarrow, and they all seemed to prefer Ragwort and Erysimum, this year the Gatekeepers and Ringlets really liked the Yarrow and I didn’t really see either on the Erysimum; in fact the only flutters I’ve seen on Erysimum were the Whites.
And I think perhaps I ought to stop… So I’ll finish with the Vapourer moth caterpillar. Such amazing, crazy, interesting caterpillar. It’s a shame it grows up to be perhaps the most boring moth you could imagine!