Cladonia pyxidata

These are growing on the wall at the end of my garden. The lichens are a species of Cladonia, probably pyxidata but I am not sure and there is also some moss.

The whole scene is about 5cm across…. a little world of its own.

Taken with the aid of a flash unit and then 4 photos stacked together.

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Aside

Attenborough says count butterflies; so this is how it is on Clearwell Meend.

I was motivated to spend an hour or so photographing the butterflies on Clearwell Meed today because we have recently had some Marbled Whites in the garden. As I had expected there were lots flitting about up there, possibly they were just about out numbered by the Meadow Browns, but they of course look more spectacular.

There were quite a few skippers about, I think both Small and Essex skippers. They are very difficult to tell apart, it all come down to the tip of their antennae and  the Essex has a distinctly black tip, as does the one below.

The Small skipper does not have a noticeably black tip…  Could this be him?

I also saw a Peacock, a Red Admiral and several Gatekeepers.

 

 

 

 

There were also lots of day flying moths, including Silver Y and Six spotted Burnetts.

And now a day later David Attenborough has urged us all to go out and count Butterflies, so who is ahead of the game…. Big butterfly count

Hunting the Birds nest Orchid

Today I went hunting…. not a bear hunt, not even a bird hunt, just a Birds nest orchid hunt…. I know they like Beech woodland and I know they are difficult to spot as they are brown (lacking any chlorophyll) and so I set off in an area near Staunton where there are some extensive woods and they are predominantly Beech.

Lots of Ramsons about and some Bluebells. Fairly soon I spotted some woodruff which is a nice little wild flower, not spectacular but different.

Then I spotted some Herb Paris, this is an odd plant it has just 4 leaves and it has a weird spiky flower but the first ones I saw were a bit ratty and did not have any flowers.

This was an extensive area of woodland with lots of good paths and I roamed around searching for the Birds nest orchids, I came across quite a lot of Twayblades which are orchids but with small green flowers, not that stunning. Also some other plants which I think were orchids but not in flower…could be Butterfly Orchids, I will return in a few weeks to check them out.

Then I found some Herb Paris which were in flower, again green but I quite like them.

The peace and quite was gradually eroding away as I was getting close to a massive quarry.

In this area I came across more Herb Paris but also some Early Purple Orchids, these are quite common but also quite impressive.

Whilst photographing these I spotted a little Fly Orchid, now this is special and quite rare so I was very happy.

If you look carefully you can even see a small greenfly at the top of the flower spike. No Birds nest Orchids but a good day…