Wolds Diary: Winged beauties are garden delights

The garden needed rain by the beginning of the week, and it certainly got it.

Sue Woodcock has been marvelling at the wildlife all around her this week.

On Monday, I was frantically trying to tidy more of the garden up. I took the dogs up to a favourite walk and really admired the massive swathes of red poppies that were in some of the fields.

I have noticed the emergence of both butterflies and moths over the last couple of weeks. As a child in the south, I used to particularly admire the magnificent Purple Emperor butterfly and was thrilled when this week I thought I’d seen one, much to my astonishment. When I got home and looked it up, I discovered that they just cannot be found up north. Maybe someone should tell this one that, because I know my butterflies!

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In my garden are some Buddleia bushes now in bloom and the butterflies attracted to it are a delight. Of course, there are the Tortoiseshell and the Red Admirals, and the magnificent Peacock butterflies and then the smaller moths and the ever-present Cabbage Whites.

Lots of bumblebees also gather in my garden to visit the flowers. I have a lot of passion flowers climbing in my garden and the bees just love them.

On Monday evening it was off to rehearsal again, for the concert this Saturday, of Brahms Requiem. It should be rather good.

The next day I headed off in the late afternoon to cross the county to just outside Huddersfield. My route took me up and down some wonderful parts of the Pennines and old mill towns with stunning views. I was talking to the WI at a charming building, Croft House, in the village of Upper Hopton. It took a while to find the meeting place but I asked a kind gentleman who showed me where to go. The group was great fun and also a wonderful audience. They even asked me to speak first so I could get home while they finished their business.

The journey home was interesting. I was soon on the M62, and heading happily home, and elected to go via Howden, not as suggested by my SatNav, up to York and back on the A1079. Suddenly, with little advance notice, the M62 was shut so I followed the diversion signs and l almost ended up near Doncaster. I had to go a long way round to find the way home.

The weather was not good the next day either. It was rather cold. The dogs were only too happy to get back from our early morning walk.

On the Thursday, my handyman came and we transformed part of the garden from what’d been an overgrown jungle into a pleasant area with pebbles and rocks, some of which I’ve been collecting for years. I love rocks. Had I have been bright enough at school I would’ve liked to have been a geologist.

We moved trees in pots and large slabs of marble and the area looks great. Now I just have to keep it like that.

In the evening, it was off for another rehearsal, this time for Pirates of Penzance.

I left it until the evening on the Friday to walk the dogs and we met no one as the light faded. In the woods I saw three deer, several hedgehogs and even a couple of bats flitting round. On the drive back, I saw a fox slinking along and a tawny owl swooping across the country lane ahead of us.