A record of wildlife in my garden and various trips to the Warwickshire countryside and occasionally further afield.
"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."
From "Auguries of Innocence"
by William Blake
Tuesday, 12 April 2011
Blossom, Butterflies and Tulips at Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens
I spent a wonderful few hours at lunchtime today wandering around Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens. Although I have only been visiting on a regular basis over the last 16months, I have been going to the Gardens occasionally ever since they first opened to the public and every year they just get better and better and more beautiful.
Lady Bridgeman's Garden
One of the stone "pineapples" in the Melon Ground
A few photos of some of the many varieties of tulips which are at their best at the moment.
The fruit trees in the North Orchard are coming into blossom and the daffodils have been replaced by a lovely display of cowslips
Looking towards the Green House
Espaliers (looking towards the North West Pier)
I went a walk around the "Extra Grounds" just outside the more formal walled garden. Bluebells are flowering in the Nut Ground
The North Pond where I disturbed a drake mallard
Despite the fact that, although it was sunny, it was colder and windier today there were a lot of butterflies about - speckled wood, small tortoiseshell, orange tip, peacock and I saw my first holly blues of the year.
The area of habitat shown in the photo below was ideal for butterflies, holly (for the pair of holly blues I saw there) and a large patch of nettles. A few plants of honesty were proving very attractive to a male and female orange tip.
Orange Tip (male)
Orange Tip female - the females lack the orange tips to the wings but share the beautiful lichen-like camouflage pattern on the hind wings
The beautiful snakeshead fritillaries around the West Pond are now in full bloom
The fruit trees are also beginning to blossom in the New Orchard
Back in the Walled Garden
The Lower Wilderness
In the Upper Wilderness the lilacs are just starting to flower
and there are great displays of tulips and more blossom
Castle Bromwich Hall being nicely renovated by the new owner - no idea though when the new hotel will be opening
There were quite a few birds around the garden today - the highlight being a jay (a new species for my Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens birdlist). I'll list the species I have seen there on the blog when I manage to select a few less photos on a future visit!
I have now seen 7 species of butterfly this year and the garden list for 2011 now stands at 5 after seeing my first speckled wood of the year last Sunday in the garden.
Stop press news re: garden blue tits - we checked the nestbox camera today for the first time since the weekend and nest material is beginning to be taken in and one of the birds (I assume the female) is roosting in the box tonight. They have started nest building a bit earlier than last year when it was the 18th April. I will try and persuade my husband to put some video from the nestbox camera on to a disc and try and upload some footage to my blog at the weekend.
Welcome to my blog. I have been interested in natural history from an early age and we have tried to create a garden attractive to wildlife. I also enjoy reading, photography, collecting fossils, visiting historic buildings and gardens and supporting Aston Villa. Please feel free to leave a comment and, if you would like to email me, my email address is ciraggedrobinsATgmail.com - remember to replace AT with @. Thank you for visiting.