Garden butterflies

Since moving in, little by little, we have been putting in flowering shrubs and other plants in the garden, trying to make it as attractive as possible for butterflies. Two Buddleia shrubs, as expected, have been superb with a throng some days of Cardinals, Common and Scarce Swallowtails, Clouded Yellows, Red Admirals and Painted Ladies. Our lavenders are thriving and are loved by bees and butterflies alike. Here is a photo of the gorgeous Marsh Fritillery on a lavender flower, taken by one of our regular guests, Peter Boardman. The delicate Long-tailed Blue is another common species in the garden, sometimes on the lavender or chasing each other high in the canopy of the trees beside the pool. The other photo shows the Two-tailed Pasha, the biggest of them all, perched on the hand of our son, Patrick a couple of days ago, when I returned from a two week trip abroad. The Two-tailed Pasha's larval food plant is the strawberry tree, a common native species here (and I have planted five specimens in the garden), but what attracts the adults is rotting fruit and as the fig season approaches I suspect we shall see many more of this magnificent butterfly.


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