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Giving It The Green Light

Light Through Leaves

Giving It The Green Light

Such beautiful light through the leaf canopy at Winkworth Arboretum yesterday morning! Sharing the joy of this simple pleasure for this week’s Fotospeed challenge. Hope you all have a great week!

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Aquilegia

Aquilegia

Aquilegia

Aquilegia is often known as Columbine or Granny’s Bonnet. I found this pretty, pink cultivar in the Wild Woods at RHS Wisley Gardens yesterday. Simon and I had a busy weekend but just about managed to take an hour’s break to get some fresh air, coffee and cake. The dappled sunlight really glowed on these little flowers, they were quite captivating! Among all the lovely sights at Wisley yesterday, I thought that I would share these beauties for this week’s Fotospeed Challenge. I hope they are an uplifting sight for you all!

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Chasing Dreams

Male and female brimstone butterflies in a mating dance

Chasing Dreams

I spent a lovely afternoon at RHS Wisley Gardens yesterday, wandering through the pinetum and woodland areas, chasing butterflies. The woods in the pinetum are full of native bluebells. Their importance as a food source for butterflies and other insects was so evident in the number that we spotted! I found six different butterfly species in and around one small area of bluebells. Brimstone butterflies were by far the most numerous! They delighted us all with a dance of love, as the more vibrant males competed for the attention of the paler females. Pure magic! My featured image, of the male and female dancing together, is my entry for this week’s Fotospeed challenge. I’m including a gallery of all six butterfly species below; comma, large white, brimstone, green-veined white, peacock and speckled wood.

Male and female brimstone butterflies in a mating dance

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Blue Monday: Enchanted Pathway

Enchanted Pathway

Blue Monday: Enchanted Pathway

A magical sight waited for us in the woodland yesterday, where a group of us gathered to celebrate a good friend’s birthday. I followed the track dividing the woodland plots and discovered that the bluebells were taking over the rutted track, once used by man and machine, now given back to nature. I’ve added this sighting to The Woodland Trust‘s online survey of bluebell woods, helping to build a national picture of the locations of our native bluebells. Sightings of hybrid and Spanish Bluebells can also be added to the Big Bluebell Watch, to help with conservation management. This is also my entry for the Fotospeed challenge this week. I expect bluebells will be featuring heavily again this week on their twitter feed and I just hope that everyone can feel the magic in my capture.

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Let There Be Light

Let There Be Light

Let There Be Light

My entry for the Fotospeed Challenge is this lighting abstract. One of the many curios that I discovered at the Cotswold Motoring Museum. I’ve been in Bourton-on-the-Water for a girls weekend away with my best friend, Rachel. Yes, that’s right, a GIRLS weekend, we went to a motor museum, and it was fantastic! Our whole trip was brilliant, it’s been ages since we were let loose together 😉

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Blue Monday: Spanish Belles

Spanish Bluebell

Blue Monday: Spanish Belles

I photographed these Spanish Bluebells in my parents garden on Easter Sunday for my Blue Monday post and entry for Fotospeed’s weekly photo challenge. The Spanish Bluebell is very pretty but as a non-native species has become an increasing threat to the native British Bluebells in our woodlands. I’m hoping to capture some of those beauties soon! One of the ways that the Spanish variety has been spread to woodland areas has been in the ilegal fly-tipping of garden waste. They can be cross-pollinated with the native species creating hybrids that change future generations forever! Please be careful with your garden waste this year. More information can be found at The Woodland Trust.

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The Martian

The Martian

The Martian

This Martian War Machine is one of a number of sculptures set around Woking and in Horsell Common, that celebrate the author H.G. Wells who lived in Woking at the time he wrote his famous novel The War Of The Worlds. It has been adapted so many times but in the original it is here, in my home town, that the Martians first land. They proceed to wipe out most of the area around where I live before heading up to London via Kingston and Richmond. I would love to one day see or hear a production that is actually set in its original location! Until then I decided to give the Martian sculpture a menacing and alien looking backdrop using various overlays of smoke and granite. This is my entry for the Fotospeed Challenge using an image photographed over the weekend. The sunshine really gave a boost to the metal workings of the sculpture! I created a few images of the machine, the second that I’m posting here was shot from directly under the sculpture.

Martian War Machines

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Grow Your Own Way

My Favourite Tree

Grow Your Own Way

Here’s my entry for today’s Fotospeed Challenge. It was taken yesterday afternoon on a glorious Spring day at RHS Wisley Gardens. This is my favourite tree in the gardens and it’s at it’s best right now. Blossom bursting from those wonderfully twisted limbs, a carpet of grape hyacinth and the border of fiery dogwood starting to sprout. It makes me happy!

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The Way Forward, Illuminated

Walkway Over The Wetlands

The Way Forward, Illuminated

A busy weekend and little time for any photography for the Fotospeed Challenge! We did manage a brief stop at Heather Farm Wetlands Centre for a lovely cuppa and slice of cake at the Waters Edge Cafe though. The brisk wind was creating so much movement in the clouds, with a hopeful brightness appearing on the horizon. I have tried to convey all of that in this mono from one of the walkways over the marshland. Hope you like it!

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Golden Crown

Guild Castle surrounded by daffodils

Golden Crown

Yesterday I joined a group of local photographers for a photoramble around Guildford. We picked the wrong day! It was absolutely tipping it down with rain and most of the group gave up before reaching the Castle Grounds. Well the daffodils were truly glorious, crowning the hill with gold. Shame about the sky at the time which was grey and featureless! For my Fotospeed Challenge image I decided that I would merge a beautiful spring-blue sky from Saturday into my photo of the castle. The resulting composite is the sight that I had been imagining enjoying and capturing on our day out! Despite the rain I loved going around the grounds, seeing the beautiful daffodils, primrose and blossoms. There was so much birdsong and a real feel of life springing up around me! I am looking forward to seeing the grounds carpeted with tulips soon 🙂