Butterflies, dandelions and trees

Yesterday was the start of Save Our Butterflies Week which continues through to next Sunday, 27th May. I’ve seen very few so far this year,  just one or two whites on the occasional sunny day. The forecast is for some sunny and warm days next week so perhaps I’ll get to see a Painted Lady like this one from three years ago.

It’s one of only a handful of good butterfly photos that I’ve taken in as many years.  Needless to say I’d like to both see, and photograph, more as they have to be the most delightful wildlife that visit our gardens.

Whilst most of us are happy to see  dandelions on roadside grass verges it’s a different matter in the garden where we tend to view them as pernicious weeds. I leave any on the grass paths to flower but try to dead-head them before it’s too late.  I think the seed-heads have a wonderful out-of -this-world look to them.

As you can see from this interesting post that Lucy did last Tuesday she likes dandelions.

I’m not doing a separate plot trees post this time, but this was the last post about them, and this lists other tree followers.

The plot hawthorn appears to be a non-blossoming variety as there’s no sign of any yet again this year. Never mind as I’m happy to have it as a feature on the plot, and it’s a good habitat for lots of wildlife.

The plum tree looked good during March and April when it was covered in blossom.

That was sadly rather rather short-lived but much to my surprise when I looked closely last week there’s now fruit forming.  I can’t wait to find out if they’re edible.

Happy gardening, and have a good week!

[Click on any picture to see a larger image]

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About Flighty

...allotmenteer, armchair gardener, blogger and sofa flyer.
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25 Responses to Butterflies, dandelions and trees

  1. Mark Willis says:

    I think you under-rate yourself, Flighty! Lots of your photos are really good, not just one or two.
    I too have noticed how few butterflies there are this year. I wonder if they will appear later?

    • Flighty says:

      Mark many thanks! I actually meant photos of butterflies, so I’ve edited the above to make it clearer.
      Not surprising as they like it sunny and warm and it’s been mostly cold and wet. Some will if we get good weather. Cheers.

  2. Jo says:

    I don’t think I’ve seen any butterflies yet this year, but I’ve seen lots of ladybirds, they seem to be everywhere I look. Bees seem to be in short supply too. Fingers crossed for some warmer weather this coming week, we could sure do with it.

    • Flighty says:

      Jo I’m not surprised. I’ve seen lots of ladybirds as well. Bees don’t like it cold and wet, and have been struggling to find food.
      The forecast is looking good so let’s hope so. xx

  3. elaine says:

    I’m with Jo on this one – I’m sure they will re-appear eventually – wonder where they have gone to keep warm – I think I’ll go with them.

    • Flighty says:

      Elaine they should do. I’m not sure but I think that they go back into semi-hibernation. Warmer weather looks to be on the way this week. xx

  4. nikkipolani says:

    Boy, that was fast — from flowers to fruit already! Hope you’ll be seeing more butterflies. Roomie tells me that a swallowtail was flitting through the garden when Wimsey tried to bat at it. He was, of course, much too slow!

    • Flighty says:

      Nikki they are still tiny but hopefully will grow to a good size. Thanks, I hope so too.
      It’s always fun to watch a cat chasing a butterfly. xx

  5. wellywoman says:

    There were a quite a lot of butterflies out and about during the warm spell in March but since then I have seen few. The best plant I’ve found for encouraging butterflies is verbena bonariensis, they just love it. The advantage is, although it grows tall it is a very airy plant and doesn’t take up too much space. I even had 2 hummingbird hawk moths in the garden on the verbena last year. Hope your plum tree produces some tasty fruit.

    • Flighty says:

      Welly I guess that the weather in April and May has probably confused them. Yes that’s a really good plant which I must grow on the plot.
      Lucky you, I’ve never seen a hummingbird hawk moth. Me too! xx

  6. Mo says:

    I’d completely forgotten about Save Our Butterflies – thanks for the reminder! I have seen very few, if any this year. Ladybirds we have, like everyone else. We do have quite a few bees buzzing about too, and wasps.

  7. Lynda says:

    I’m going to be making dandelion marmalade next weekend!
    I’ve seen only 1 butterfly this year so far!

    • Flighty says:

      Lynda hello, that sounds interesting, you’ll have to let us know what it tastes like.
      I’ve only seen a few, but let’s hope with better weather we all get to see more.
      I see that you’ve now got your plot and been blogging about it. I’ll have a read over the next few days, and put you back on the lawn loungers list.
      Take care, and happy gardening. xx

  8. Glo says:

    Lovely to see your photos and to know you are watching out for butterflies ~ I see a white one flitting around here occasionally. Dandelions are fascinating ~ especially the ones that have gone to seed. I’m sure every child blew many seeds across the countryside ~ and perhaps a few adults as well. It’s good that some people celebrate them and enjoy using them in certain recipes. Here’s hoping your plum tree puts out some fruit. With the changeable and confusing weather, I haven’t a clue what will happen come harvest time!

    • Flighty says:

      Glo thanks, I’m always watching out for them. As you say dandelions are fascinating, and I guess most people will have done that. Mmm, I hope so.
      Here I guess that a lot of things will be later than usual. xx

  9. I have to make do with the butterfly house at London zoo for now, no butterflies to be seen yet at the Veg Patch. Warm sunshine today brought lots of ladybirds out into the open and a wasp flew through my bedroom window this morning (it was swiftly encouraged out!). Lucky, lucky you with your plums forming; I checked my trees today: plenty of apples and cherries and no plums or pears as far as I can tell, although there was plenty of blossom. Lots of leaf though so I think that I have that at the expense of the fruit. I’ll have to make do with watching yours grow! xx

    • Flighty says:

      Caro I’ve still only seen a few whites so far. There are lots of ladybirds.
      Thanks, but I thank that I’m going to really lucky if I get edible plums. I’ll keep everyone informed on how they do. xx

  10. Doris says:

    Your butterfly photo is lovely and I agree with Mark that you are under-rating yourself. I remember other nice shots of yours. You would be amazed here in Quebec where there has been a population explosion of Red Admiral butterflies. They are everywhere! You see tiny tornadoes of them as they squabble and fight (at least I think that is what they are doing!). An estimated 300 million came into eastern Canada this year! It has been a photographer’s dream. I hope you get to see more Painted Ladies!

  11. Flighty says:

    Doris thanks. That sounds wonderful, and I hope that you get some great photos.
    I hope so to but I doubt it this year as they’re a summer migrant in variable numbers. It would be nice to something different. xx

  12. Karen says:

    Hardly any butterflies around here either, only a few whites and yesterday I saw some Orange Tip. Last months weather would have made it difficult or impossible for them to breed. I adore butterflies and garden for them, even turning a blind eye to caterpillars munching through brassicas, I plant extra for them. Painted Lady is one of my favourites too, they seem to enjoy our Buddleia davidii.

    Last year I saw a Hummingbird Hawk Moth in my parents garden, it was so beautiful it took my breath away.

    • Flighty says:

      Karen it’s such a shame that we’ve seen so few, but it’s not surprising.
      Lucky you as I’ve never seen a Hummingbird Hawk Moth, which has been on my ‘would like to see’ wish list for a very long time! xx

  13. Liz says:

    Plum flowers a few weeks ago and now fruit forming. Progress!

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