Thursday 25 May 2017

My BBC Springwatch SOS Wildflower Trough (3)

You can see from the photo above, taken this afternoon, just how my wild flower seedlings have grown. There are some buds, and I am keeping a watchful eye on these as it will be good to see the first flower. The trough is my response to the BBC Springwatch S.O.S. project to try to encourage pollinators into the garden. 

The insects, it appears, are not so impatient. I always enjoy seeing Marmalade Hoverflies in the garden. This is the first one I have seen in my trough. These insects are not only good pollinators but their larvae are also useful aphid-eaters.

The photo above shows a Ladybird, unfortunately a succinea Harlequin (Harmonia axyridis), on one of the shoots that is likely to produce the first flowers. It will eat the aphids, but it is not the most welcome of guests.

As I looked around the trough, I noticed a tight ball on the nasturtiums...

... and recognised these Garden Spider spiderlings as we have had clutches of them in the garden on previous years. They are orb-weavers, and the second part of their name, 'diadematus', reflects their jewel like appearance. I hope they won't eat too many of our butterflies, but I find it hard to be so concerned about the wasps and flies that will also make up their diet as they grow.

They dispersed later in the day, making their way over the trough and out into the big wide world.

My trough at the outset prior to wildflower seed-sowing

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