Flying visitors keep coming.

There is no stopping the butterflies that keep coming to the garden. As well as the normal visitors that we usually have, we have had a couple of firsts, for this garden anyway. You also have to watch where you are walking, they are on the lawn, on the steps, on the paving,  as well as on all the flowers. I think I can safely say that the Peacock has been seen here the most, 20 or 30 a day sometimes is no exaggeration.


Tortoiseshell and Comma

Tortoiseshell and a Comma on the pink buddleia  in the bee and butterfly border, it’s living up to its name!

Silver Washed Fritillary

This Comma is enjoying all the nectar provided, it was oblivious to me standing only a few inches away.

Dusky Meadow Brown

This is one of our “new” butterflies, if I’m correct, I think it is a Dusky Meadow Brown. The photo isn’t brilliant, but the best I could manage at the time, it then flew away and I haven’t seen it since!

Silver washed fritillary

Silver Washed Fritillaries are increasing in number, they are beautiful large butterflies, whereas at one time we only ever saw one at a time, now there can be 4 or 5 jostling for position on the buddleia.

Jersey Tiger Moth

Look who’s back again, the Jersey Tiger Moth. I don’t know if it is the same one that we see each day, but it is here quite a lot now. This one is co-operating and showing us the red/orange of its underwing.

Jersey Tiger Moth

I hadn’t realised that as well as having black and white stripes on its wings, the Jersey Tiger Moth has them on its legs as well!

Red Admiral

There are so many Red Admirals here in various stages of their adult life. This one is so pristine, it must have just emerged from its chrysallis.

Red Admiral

This one has had a couple of chunks taken out of its wings, but it didn’t seem to make any difference to the way it flies.

Red admiral

Another with the edges missing from its wings……

Red Admiral

…..and another beautiful pristine one, resting on a rose bush.


At last, I have managed to photograph a Speckled Wood, they have been so skittish up till now, flying away as soon as I approached.

Butterflies on the steps

A Peacock and a Tortoiseshell resting on the top step near the back door. Either they were just sitting, sunbathing, or they were getting minerals from on the step.


A brimstone paid us a visit the other day and seems to be hanging around for a bit. They are lovely butterflies, this is the male, the female is white and often gets confused with the cabbage white. When they land on foliage, they are so well camouflaged, they look just like a leaf.

Small copper

Another new one for the garden here, a Small Copper, such a pretty butterfly. Hope it comes again.

Peacocks and bumblebee

Two Peacocks and a bumlebee oblivious to everything except drinking as much nectar as possible, the bumblebee was burrowing right into the small flowers.


A beautiful Tortoiseshell butterfly, newly emerged, in all its glory.


This is one of a pair of white buddleias, one either side of a grass path. The perfume is so strong from these bushes, I’m not surprised that the butterflies prefer these to the blue and purple varieties that we have.

Racing pigeon.

The other day, we had a different sort of visitor. We have plenty of wood pigeons, but they are portly and waddle about the garden, this one was much more streamlined. I noticed that it had a ring on its left leg, you can just about make it out on the photo, so assumed that it was a racing pigeon that had gone a bit off course! It decided that the top shelf in the greenhouse was the perfect place to have a rest. It allowed me to get to about 3 ft from it, so was able to leave a dish with some seed beside it. It was still there when we went to bed but by next morning it had gone along with half the seed.

I’m just wondering what my next flying visitors will be!


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28 Responses to Flying visitors keep coming.

  1. Gitte says:

    Isn´t it lovely to have all these beautiful butterflies visiting and feeding in your garden? You have many different ones. The Peacock is the most common here, and Admirals also. We have others, but the names I don´t know. Buddleias are so fragrant. I also have a white one, and 4-5 purple ones.

    • Pauline says:

      I agree Gitte, butterflies flying round a garden brings it to life, it is wonderful to watch them. When I bought all my buddleias, I hadn’t realised that some had much more perfume than others, the white is the favourite, followed by the pink, with blue and purple lagging behind.

  2. Sally says:

    How beautiful! It’s so much fun to watch nature at it’s best. The Peacocks are amazing. It must be hard to drag yourself away to do chores!

    • Pauline says:

      Nice to hear from you Sally, thanks for leaving a message! We love watching nature in the garden, we are getting more and more each year. I’m afraid watching bees, birds and butterflies comes before doing housework!

  3. Cathy says:

    You’ve managed to get some lovely photos of them. We haven’t had many and not much variety, and I’ve had no luck with the camera so far! Perhaps I need to have anothe go ar growing a buddleia, although they don’t seem happy in my garden and I’ve lost two or three already… Enjoy watching all those butterflies!

    • Pauline says:

      Cathy, I do enjoy watching them, when really I should be doing something else! How strange that buddleia don’t want to grow for you when they seed around where they’re not wanted, maybe your soil is too good for them!
      Btw, I have the seed for the poppies I promised you, I will get them in the post soon.

  4. pbmgarden says:

    Pauline, what treasures you have in the form of these butterflies. I would be giddy to see so many different kinds. Susie

    • Pauline says:

      Susie, I seem to spend so much time following the butterflies round the garden, I really should get more work done! We are lucky to have so many different varieties, but then I’m sure you have lots of different ones too!

  5. Anna says:

    What a wonderful summer it has been for butterflies Pauline. Exciting to have some new visitors and so obliging of them to settle long enough for you to take photos. I’m always amazed that I see some different butterflies when I visit the allotment which is only a couple of miles away from home if that.

    • Pauline says:

      I agree Anna, it has been a wonderful summer for butterflies, I hope we still have another month for them to be flitting round the garden. When we allow part of the lawn to grow long as a spring meadow, we get different butterflies coming to the long grass, different habitats have different butterflies.

  6. Cathy says:

    I am amazed at how you have been able to get all these lovely photos Pauline – well done! We have certainly been getting more butterflies other than the cabbage whites in the last few weeks but they don’t stay still long enough for me to check what they are, although I am afraid I would not recognise all these ones of yours. That Jersey Tiger moth is a handsome critter, isn’t he? The previous owner of our house was clearly fond of buddleias as they were one of the very few decorative plants he had in the garden, but I am afraid I got so fed up of them seeding themselves around that I dug them all out and don’t regret it, however good they are for butterflies!

    • Pauline says:

      So many cabbage whites this year Cathy, I don’t think we have ever had so many before, but I wasn’t going to spend time chasing them to photograph! My little butterfly and moth book is the one I had as a child and when we moved here and found so many new varieties in the garden, it was well used once more. I still need to look up any new varieties that I see and that was how I found the Tiger Moth. It is still around in the Bee and Butterfly border, it almost landed on me this afternoon! As you have been digging out your buddleias, I have been planting more!!

  7. rusty duck says:

    Note to self: must get a white buddleia. Or two.
    There seem to have been many more butterflies around this year, but I’ve yet to see a Tiger Moth! Wonderful.

    • Pauline says:

      I can certainly recommend a white buddleia Jessica, it is always covered in fluttering butterflies. It has been a really good year for them with all the sunshine that we have had, maybe I can catch up with the housework this weekend when we should be having much needed rain! The Jersey Tiger Moth certainly seems to like what’s on offer in the garden here, there’s no mistaking it when it flies.

  8. Annette says:

    How enjoyable to see this huge variety of butterflies – well done capturing them all, lots of patience needed, I know this too well. A lot of people consider Buddleja a nuisance but they’re so popular with butterflies that every garden should have one. I’d love to do a moth count again but we’d need to build a moth trap first and no time for this right now.

    • Pauline says:

      I wouldn’t be without buddleja Annette, in fact I sometimes think I have planted too many, but when the butterflies arrive, it is worth it. I think time spent trying to photograph them is far more interesting than housework! A moth trap would be fascinating, we must have a fair number of different ones, but I only see the ones that fly during the day.

  9. Christina says:

    What a feast of butterflies you have Pauline, you are really doing your bit for the pollen and nector seekers, beautiful

    • Pauline says:

      I think the message is getting across Christina, that we all have to do what we can to help the bees mainly, but also other insects as well. We have had quite a few honey bees, who had a terrible time of it last year with all the rain, hopefully they will have been able to build up their numbers in all the sunshine this year.

  10. Jayne says:

    What a glorious selection of butterflies! I have never even seen some of those. I’d be THRILLED to see that variety in my garden!! I wonder if the pigeon is just stopping for some nourishment or is really lost? People who own those pigeons get quite attached to them! We once had one live with us for a few days – seemed quite fond of us, and then disappeared!!

    • Pauline says:

      We are lucky Jayne, in that we have a few different habitats within the garden. We have a small strip of woodland, so the woodland varieties are happy to come the short distance to the flower beds to feed and areas of long grass bring in the meadow butterflies. I think the main factor in the number of varieties is that we grow the plants that a lot of the caterpillars like to eat.
      My husband had seen the pigeon a couple of days before I did, so maybe it was disorientated and just resting and feeding before going home, we hope it found its way home, maybe navigating by the stars!

  11. Alberto says:

    You have plenty of butterflies visiting your garden, I’m charmed by the peacocks, I don’t see them very often around here. There are quite a lot of Small Copper, instead.
    Thanks to this post of yours I remembered I found a huge caterpillar with a horn, by the kitchen door this morning and after a little research I found out it might become a Deilephila elpenor, some pinkish moth that lives amongst grapevines, which is in accordance with my surroundings. I’ll pay more attention next time I’m going to steal grapes in the neighbor’s field…

    • Pauline says:

      We are very lucky Alberto, to have so many varieties visiting the garden, I love seeing them flitting around, so colourful above all the flowers.
      Deilephila elpenor visits this country too, although I have never seen one, here it is called the Elephant Hawk moth and feeds on honeysuckle and rosebay willow herb, vineyards being in short supply!

  12. debsgarden says:

    The flying visitors to your garden are a testimony to the quality of your garden. What a wonderful variety of butterflies! The Jersey Tiger Moth is amazing; I have never seen one here. I can imagine what pleasure you get just walking in your garden!

    • Pauline says:

      Thanks Debs, I try to grow the plants that provide the food that they enjoy! I think the tiger Moth is just found in Europe, but then I’m sure you have lots of super butterflies, are you on the Monarch migration route, that must be wonderful to see!

  13. wellywoman says:

    A lovely post Pauline. I love butterflies. It’s been a mixed year in our garden. So much better than last year but then that wouldn’t be difficult. It hasn’t been great though, despite all of the flowers. Small tortoise shells, commas, the occasional peacock and lots of whites. Disappointingly red admirals are a pretty rare sight here. I remember them being all over the place when I was growing up. And no hummingbird hawk moth. I thought with such a lovely July we might get some but none so far. It’s good to see butterflies doing so well in Devon. :))

    • Pauline says:

      We are now a few degrees cooler WW, rather windy and all of a sudden, all the butterflies have vanished except the large whites! The forecast for the weekend isn’t butterfly weather unfortunately, so I wonder if we will see any more this year. I would say that down here has been a very good year for butterflies, even so, there are still a few of the usual ones that we haven’t seen this year. I did manage to catch a glimpse of a hummingbird hawk moth, but it was gone before I could get the camera set up!

  14. What a fabulous place! Staying there would be like finding oneself in heaven. Thanks for all the lovely photos of the place. Blessings, Natalie

    • Pauline says:

      Natalie, somehow I think your comment has gone to the wrong post,I think it should be for “Our holiday garden” in October. It was a wonderful place to stay, so colourful and welcoming, it certainly was heaven for a gardener with so many beautiful plants.

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