Birds, Leps, Observations & Generalities - the images and ramblings of Mark Skevington. Sometimes.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Life in the garden 09/04/2010

Our rear garden lawn is gradually sinking and the bottom half of the garden is a clay bog. On the upside, the lawn is generally unmowable until after a good couple of weeks or so of dry warm weather ..... The borders are not too bad, though neither of us bothers too much about weeding other than in occasional bursts of enthusiastic culling. As for the paved bits, I reckon its only the weeds and moss that stops the slabs from wobbling. The front 'garden' is a lot smaller than it used to be - not physically as such, but there used to be a lawn there aswell before we had an extension to the house and driveway. Now there is just a planted area around our cherry tree. The gardens are not exactly wild and unkempt, but they are not formal and neat either - somewhere in between which does mean that there are opportunities for finding all sorts of unexpected things of you have a good look. But today when I got home from work early, I wasn't searching the undergrowth - just enjoying the sunshine and have a general nose around.

One thing I noticed was some small yellow flowers growing around slabs that I couldn't remember seeing there before. When it comes to plants and flowers I am pretty much incompetent - I just can't retain an image of the structure/colour and associate it with a name in the same way that I can with relative ease for birds, moths etc. Anyway, I noticed the flowers but didn't know what they were. This prompted me to dig out the only wild flower books I have to again trawl through blindly. Whilst I had the book in hand, I recalled various people mentioning seeing Lesser Celandine recently so I looked it up. Bugger me - it was the small yellow flower I was intending to try and identify! Or at least I think so ....

Of the flowers that we have actually planted, pleasing to see that the Snake's Head Fritillaries (sourced from commercial stock) continue to thrive:

Also about were my first Peacocks of the year, with several flying around in bursts in between soaking up the sun, and also my first wasps. Also lots of big fat White-tailed and Red-tailed Bumblebees evident, plus loads of 7-Spot Ladybirds and a couple of 2-Spots.

A weakly-marked 7-Spot

The garden moth traps last night produced a total of 44 of 11sp. (125W MV 16 of 7, 80W actinic 28 of 9).

0672 Parsnip Moth (Depressaria heraclei) 1 [first for year]
0688 Agonopterix heracliana 1
1524 Emmelina monodactyla 1
1746 Shoulder Stripe (Anticlea badiata) 1
1862 Double-striped Pug (Gymnoscelis rufifasciata) 1
1917 Early Thorn (Selenia dentaria) 1 [first for year]
2182 Small Quaker (Orthosia cruda) 3
2187 Common Quaker (Orthosia cerasi) 11
2188 Clouded Drab (Orthosia incerta) 8
2190 Hebrew Character (Orthosia gothica) 13
2243 Early Grey (Xylocampa areola) 3

Early Thorn

Nothing remotely interesting bird-wise to report.

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