The Butterfly Net

Paving 1Paving 2

Jackie and I spent the morning weeding whilst Aaron and Robin continued refining their paving. This involves finishing of the ends with brick cut to shape with an angle iron. There are only the central joins left to be completed. We are so fortunate that the proprietor of A.P. Maintenance is such a perfectionist.

We now have several crocosmia blooming.

According to my research, this one is Xcrocosmiiflora. Jackie says it’s ‘common or garden monbretia’;

Crocosmia Xcrocosmiiflora

Crocosmia Lucifer

about Lucifer, there is no doubt.


Jackie grew these marigolds from seed.

‘When did you take that?’ bemoaned The Head Gardener. ‘I dead-headed those this morning’.

The air was positively aflutter with butterflies this afternoon.

Butterfly Comma on echinacea

Commas abound. Here one seeks camouflage on an echinacea;

Butterfly Peacock on stump

as did this Peacock on a dead stump. It kept me waiting, back bent, lens poised, before opening its wings. With these closed, the creature looked just like a crack in the bark.

Butterfly Green veined white on verbena bonarensis

I think this, on a verbena bonarensis, is a Green-veined White.

Butterfly Red Admiral on hebe

Is this poor, battered, Red Admiral a reincarnation of February’s Battle-Scarred example?

I have written before of the penchant of Chris and I, when we were very little boys, for collecting various insects. Between us, my brother and I did not possess a camera, but we did have a butterfly net. Many happy hours were spent, mostly unsuccessfully, dashing around what were, to us, head-high fields, gleefully waving this weapon in the vague direction of the adult versions of the caterpillars that had so horrified our grandmother. What we actually did with the unfortunates we did manage to snare was not meant to be unkind. After all, when we stuffed them into jam jars, we did insert a few leaves and bits of grass, and punctured the lids so that they could breathe. I don’t imagine that these imagos lived out their, albeit brief, natural span. My current collecting is done with a camera.

Anyone driving to us for the first time, is likely to miss the existing sign on the front wall facing directly out onto the road. Jackie has therefore made another that she has fixed to the angled wall so that at least people coming from the direction of Christchurch, can’t miss Old Post House sign

If you aren’t interested in cricket, you may prefer to skip the next paragraph. If you are an English cricket fan, you may prefer to skip the next paragraph. If you are an Australian, whether interested in cricket or not, you probably wouldn’t want to skip the next paragraph.

I made the mistake of watching the TV highlights of the second Test match at Lords. Australia had, in their first innings, scored 566 runs for eight wickets. They then bowled England out for 312. Before lunch today, the visitors had taken their overnight second innings score to 254 for 2, at which point they declared their innings closed, leaving England 509 to make in more than a day and a half. Less than five hours later, England were all out for 103. It was nothing short of slaughter.

This evening, Jackie and I shared our hob in producing fried egg, bacon, tomatoes, and mushrooms, baked beans, and toast. We enjoyed the rest of Shelly’s apple pie and cream, with half each of a chocolate mint brought back from the Veranda last night. Jackie drank Hoegaarden, and, despite it not being the most suitable accompaniment for a fry-up, I drank Louis de Camponac merlot 2014.

Published by derrickjknight

I am an octogenarian enjoying rambling physically and photographing what I see, and rambling in my head as memories are triggered. I also ramble through a lifetime's photographs. In these later years much rambling is done in a car.

48 thoughts on “The Butterfly Net

  1. Poor tattered butterfly. There have been days when I’ve felt like that. I followed the link and read about your grandmother and the creepy-crawlies. I enjoyed that post, too. ~Ginene

  2. The crocosmiiflora I detest mostly probably because they’re hard to spell and because they’re a pest… the rest of your garden is gorgeous. Absolutely. And we don’t have your variety of butterflies – we have the red admiral and the “cabbage white” – also the white admiral, which I haven’t spied in your collection.

      1. It simple has cream where the red is in the red admiral. (Sort of the chaffinch of the goldfinch family…) But we don’t have these other beautiful butterflies. The 19th century colonists have let us down!

  3. That ‘Peacock’ looks like some sort of ET staring out from a stump.

    Love the butterflies. I felt some tenderness towards the battered one. A portrait of me.

  4. As a child I too remember stalking butterflies for hours. I did not have a net, just a cupped hand. I had the jars with punctured lids, the leaves and also some drops of water waiting for their prisoners arrival. I mostly caught the common white and the tiny lilac-grey coloured moths whose proper name I have never known and whom I have now not seen for years. As I only had the one jar they would be released after a few hours of admiration. I was so devastated when the one monarch I happened to capture [and keep] died in my jar that I gave up that hobby. I often wonder why I did not realise that would be the ultimate outcome of any capture. Beautiful photos as always – the battered Red Admiral obviously a pictorial metaphor for many of us 🙂

  5. I finally succumbed to curiosity, and looked for this Hoegaarden that the head Gardner often sips upon. My curiosity is now satisfied!

    That Peacock butterfly is so flamboyant.

    1. Do try it Yvonne, I first drank it in Belgium, and as a non beer drinker I was not hopeful that I would like it. First beer I have ever liked and on regular trips to friends in Belgium I would always drink ‘bier blanche’. I was so enthusiastic that our friends arranged a trip to the quaint old brewery in Hoegaarten in Belgium, it was wonderful, and, interestingly full of British made brewing equipment from the midlands. They use orange peel and coriander in the making of this beer that gives it a unique flavour. My joy was complete when they, at last, began to sell it in Britain!

  6. So lovely Derrick! I love how you said “The air was positively aflutter with butterflies this afternoon” as the butterflies are very active here too at the moment. It’s wonderful! 🙂

  7. I will ignore the cricket. The butterflies are lovely. There are still white admirals in the New Forest. If you take the road on the right as you leave Brockenhurst, just before the Balmer Lawn and carry on from about a mile you go round a sharp right hand Ben and afte that there are rides into the forest. Back int eh 70s and 80s there were loads, alongside the silver washed fritillaries. I last saw one there in about 2007 and would be very surprised if they don’t still fly. This time of year so a great time to go and have a look! As you might gather form this, butterflies and moths loomed large in my childhood – dad bred them, all sorts, moths too. I wish there were more still. Thanks for the memory jogger.

  8. I wish I’d had my camera ready today. We’d just gotten home from food shopping and spotted a monarch flitting around the yard. The kids were excited because they had seen one emerge from its chrysalis at their grandma’s house.

    I can’t wait to show them these pictures! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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