Friday, 9 July 2010

Wild flowers, big moths and a birthday tea

Had a scrumptious cream tea in the garden on Sunday with lovely friends to celebrate my birthday (a couple of days early) and then took off up to the Lake District for a few days to walk it off!  

I have to say that I sometimes find the mountains in the Western Lakes a bit daunting in scale and severity and even a bit claustrophobic, if I'm frank.   But there are teeny-tiny things which I'm more comfortable with, like this exquisite flora.   I haven't had a chance to look up all their names yet, so we'll stick with 'wild flowers' for now, until I get the book out.

Oh, I know this one:  'lichen'!

The climate can be so wild that it scours and bleaches any trees hardy enough to survive the searing cold wilds and lashing rain.

But nature has produced something beautiful, even in the face of such inhospitable conditions, don't you think?   I love the ghostly colours and gnarled texture.

Here's a big mountain for those of you who can cope with things on such a majestic scale.

and another one

and here's something pretty, small-scale (and man-made).  And heaving with tourists.  

who all seemed to have enough small change in their pockets after paying the extortionate car-parking charge to stick tuppence in the trunk of an old fallen tree.

And this is something I didn't have time to show you before I went away:  
It's a Privet Hawk Moth which had an unexpected shower when Richard was giving the peas a drink on the morning we went.   It was huge, about 12cm (there was some suggestion that it even bared its fangs ..) 

When we googled it to find out what it was, I discovered that the shiny brown pupae that I'm always finding in the compost heap under the ash trees belong to this big moth.   Apparently privet hawk moths like ash and lilac, as well as privet.   Which is just as well, because we haven't got any.

Best wishes,



Jasmine said...

Looks like you had a wonderful birthday. The pictures are gorgeous. Belated wishes to you xJ

Printed Material said...

Belated Happy Birthday Chrissie! Lovely photos of the Privet Hawk Moth, one of my favourites. They are wonderful to hold as they prepare for flight. They start to vibrate their wings and then they take off. It's like having a small bird in your hand. Lucky you.Lesley xx

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures, Chrissie. It all looks so green - unlike the straw that is currently passing for a lawn outside my window. Glad you enjoyed your break and that Dickie survived his encounter with the man-eating moth!
love Anne

Menopausal musing said...

Happy belated birthday. Sounds to have been a good one! Lucky you re the moth, they are stunning, aren't they?

* BITTERSWEET * said...

That is some gorgeous title banner you have across the top of your blog. :-)

Things Hand Made said...

I havent been up to the lake district in years. It nice to see some photos. I love the grey scoured wood in the landscape. I wonder why the tree has coins in?

Cottage Garden said...

Hello Chrissie

Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving your comment - now I know where to find you!

Beautiful Hawk Moth. Oh and a happy belated birthday!


Uta said...

Happy Birthday Chrissie :)

Jackie said...

I have to say I love the English lake District. I'm not very good at going up mountains though.
Enjoy France!


Your photos are beautiful and very inspiring Chrissie. Hope you had a lovely birthday, when was it exactly?

Sending love