Sunday, 31 August 2014

Birthday Butterflies

For my birthday this year Steve gave me a Live Butterfly Garden. 
Once you have the garden itself you can e.mail to be sent the caterpillars. 
They come in a carton with food provided.
It has been an absolute pleasure to watch the different stages and today in
late summer sunshine, I set them free.
Here are the almost daily photos I took to record the changes.

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
 Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7
Day 8
Day 9
Day 10
Day 11
Day 12 when the paper circle was removed from the lid and pinned to the side of the cage.

Several days later the first one hatched.
Empty chrysalid cases.

Today at the warmest part of the day.
A gentle blow on the wings and they fluttered off to the nearest flower.

By the way they are Painted Ladies.
You don`t have to be a child to enjoy this, but it helps 
to look with the eyes of a child total wonderment.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Fat Caterpillars and New Homes

The weather here has certainly`s pouring, cold and miserable. I am wearing socks and a fleece to keep warm indoors. Thank goodness we have a Greek island holiday lined up for the beginning of September. Maybe we`ll  line one up for October too!!!

The old polytunnel which did us so well for a couple of years, has been transformed into a new chicken run.
The only trouble is I don`t think Edwina likes it much and she appeals to us as we pass.
I have given her a few worms.

Toffee and Treacle on the other hand are quite happy with their new home.

The raspberries are pruned and tied in. Think they could be cropping a lot more if
the wire netting was replaced with a smaller mesh.

The three dahlia tubers I moved so late in the season, are putting on plenty of leaf
but not flowering as well as they should.

We`ve planted green manure in the old onion bed.

The little orchard has done well this year. I have trimmed the damson despite being told not to, mainly because the tree looks a little bit out of hand.

I have threaded black cotton round the fruit to deter the birds pecking.
On the whole it seems to have worked.

The pumpkin chose to mature on top of the old sleeper. It was hard to actually reposition it so I left it.

The sunflowers are still hanging on.

The strawberries are all sprouting again after heavy pruning.

The cloud formations were beautiful.

And finally a huge caterpillar in our own garden....the elephant hawkmoth caterpillar.
Quite spectacular.

Friday, 22 August 2014

Lammas Crafts and Skills

We seem to have autumn creeping up on us, a little too early for my liking but we can look back on a special summer, highlighted by our celebrations. I cannot move on, without blogging all the crafts and skills that were manifested over that weekend.
So here are a few photos.

 The willow circle.

Headbands , hats and patchwork skirts.

Our thrones, sprayed by Anne and decorated by Marina who helps Anne with the yurts.
Thanks Marina....we love them.

Embroidery and knitting.

Yummy food and clever cakes.


And the entertainment.
All helping towards a very memorable day.