Arty journeys...


Sunday, 17 July 2016

Butterflies and bees (Coombe Wood) Saturday morning

Cattle trough

Orange candelarbra primulas


When I was looking really closely at this bee photo on the computer screen later on, I noticed that these little flowers have a furry petals which I never would have seen otherwise

White petals with slightly fluted edges and a little pink blush at the centre

The plants in the prairie beds have shot up dramatically

Tall thin grass stems with fuzzy white fluff inside open husks

A pale lilac cloud of strange flower spikes

A mass of green dotted with pink flowers beginning to show

Sunlight through tall leaves and Echinacea buds

Tiny little pinky-lilac bobbles floating in the foreground on delicate stems

This might be a moth with its furry body, double wings and long proboscis going deep in search of nectar . . .

. . . like a bendy straw

My butterfly and moth identification skills are rubbish. I understand there's a "Butterfly Lady" who goes to Coombe Wood from time to time - I hope to bump into her one day when I'm there.

This butterfly is orange and brown with a pale border around its wings

This one wouldn't open up for long enough to let me take a photo of the full pattern on its wings. It looked similar to the one before but much paler.

This tiny one is sitting on grass and clover leaves

One solitary poppy among the grasses

Wild carrrot (Daucus Carota) also known as Queen Anne's Lace. That deep pink flowerlet in the centre fascinates me. Almost every Wild Carrot flower head has one

On some of the slightly curved flower heads many of the surrounding tiny flowerlets are gently tinged with pink

Regular visitors to my blog know that it's not only butterflies and moths I can't identify. I'm not good oat identifying bees or black and yellow stripy insect identification either. This black and yellow flying insect could be a hover-fly. Whatever it is, it certainly hovered expertly around the flower. When getting down low to take the picture I noticed that the underneath of the tiny individual flowerlets are pink too

My cousin goes to Kew Gardens as often as she can and she also writes a blog. She was there yesterday morning - see Photos by H. She wrote yesterday "as a kid, I always hated hydrangeas, for some reason; but now I love them . . . am obviously getting old!" I may be talking nonsense here but I think that when we were children hydrangeas were far more of the mop-head variety with flowers like massive pom poms but nowadays there are more of the lace-cap variety with a circle of open sterile flowers surrounding tiny fertile flowers in the centre. I still don't particularly like the mop-heads but the lace-caps are another matter entirely.

The remaining flowers on the foxgloves are at the top making them bow down

A few tiny white flowers on the plant in front of the banana trees. The hessian, winter protection, still around the base of the banana trees

Clear resin or sap (another identification problem) dripping down Korean Pine cones. When it has been there for a while it becomes white and granular

I couldn't resist another look at the beauty-berry flowers

Gorgeous colours of acer leaves in the sun -

There are at least two kinds of spindle berry tree at Coombe Wood. The little tree has the more striking flowers and berries than the ones at the back of the wide borders. Its buds are still tightly closed unlike the other ones

These leaves look fairly insignificant until the light shines through them

Cornus flowers are wilting and the petals are gradually falling off . . .

.. . . leaving their centres standing upright above the leaves

Some flowers are extremely strange

This view is so green - with little floating dots of red from the crocosmia

Quaking grass and little pink fluffy flowers

There were insects all over the tall unidentified plant in the wild flower area the other day - there were hardly any on Saturday. I wonder what these flowers are going to do next (stay green or burst into colour) and whether the gardener has identified the plant yet

Yellow rattle

Teasel buds

Round to the wide borders - and masses of purple and pink

A bee on the Astrantias

Looking closer at these dainty flowers that remind me of glass because they are so translucent. I love the delicate colours, the raspberry centres, the dome of them stamens - and just look at the partially opened petals at the top - the green veining reminds me of Charles Rennie Mackintosh stained glass designs

Contrasts - vibrant green against shocking pink

Looking closer - one of the little, almost luminous, pearly centres is visible in this picture

A plane flew over - not the normal kind

White in the sunshine - there are so many different kinds of white (as I have mentioned before on my blog). At art college I remember one of my fellow students making a fascinating artwork based entirely on white

These were creamy white fluffy plumes not long ago but they have changed into threads of greeny brown bobbles

Again I stopedp and admire the colour and structure of these flowers

Extravagant pools of red, orange, purple, pink among the green

Neat rows of crocosmia buds about to burst into flamboyant blooms

A sea of pink floating over silvery foliage

Bee coming into land

Pink flowers with shiny green insect

Creamy white butterfly 

Good view of the bendy straw proboscis

Love in a mist seed pods with bright coloured snapdragons in the background

Shy sunflowers

Delicate pale grasses waving among the bright upright spikes of antirrynums (snapdragons)

Back to one of my favourites - lilac coloured dainty flowers

Looking across the pond from under the willow

Massive gunnera leaves

The judging for one of the garden awards has either just taken place or is about to happen. I do hope the gardener wins another award - he certainly deserves it for all his hard work on this beautiful place

Thank you very much for joining me


  1. Another gorgeous crop of photos! (you're right about the hydrangeas, it is the mop head ones I remember hating, but I can even tolerate them now! Thanks for the link too) Great to see the pond so much clearer now - if the gardener doesn't win an award, he must have had VERY stiff opposition, Coombe Wood always looks so magnificent. Going to go back and look at all the pictures in full size now!

  2. It's looking lovely up there. I like the mauve spiky spires.

  3. PS I think it could be a hummingbird moth.