Float Like A Butterfly

Really, it should be feed like a butterfly, a newly emerged one by the looks of it, for she was flitting frantically, erratically in the garden.

This Eastern Tiger Swallowtail seems so large, the wingspan was incredible as it floated among the flowers in the early morning sun.

Caterpillars had been seen munching on the fennel and parsley a few weeks earlier, growing fat and happy.

This was the first recent sighting of this Queen of the Garden. Inside we dashed to get the trusty camera, hoping to find the flutterby still feasting upon our return.

There she was, on the largest group of flowers in bloom here, the Lilium ‘Black Beauty’.

She was going at it with gusto, paying no attention as the human tiptoed under the dark foliage of Physocarpus ‘Summer Wine’ to get the right angle against the ever more glaring summer sun.

She was clumsy in her efforts, but her sticky feet allowed for even upside down nectaring.

She let me get quite close, but kept constantly moving in her frenzy.

She was a contortionist, captivating the camera toting audience.

Click, click, click, buzzzzz, the sound of the camera closing up shop as the batteries ran out.

Oh well, surely there will be some useable images in this set.

Nature’s magic reveals itself according to her own schedule. I try to be always ready to receive it.

The title of this post may be familiar to some of you, dear readers, and those who do know it will recognize that it has absolutely nothing to do with gardening. But here is what it does refer to:


This entry was posted in Musings, wildlife. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Float Like A Butterfly

  1. Carol says:

    I was not familiar with the video and never imagined that I would ever read a post with pictures of beautiful butterflies that ended up with a video of The Greatest. “Float like a butterfly and sting like a bee…” Interesting. I also like the “handcuffed lightning”. It is a bit like handcuffing lightning to capture an image of a beautiful butterfly. Well done. “I told ya!”

    Thanks Carol. I wondered if there would be anyone out there who was not familiar with this phrase. I like the juxtaposition of the the butterfly and the boxer…

  2. Barbara H. says:

    Well, that was pretty amazing to see – both the butterfly and the boxer! That was a very stunning ending, Frances!

    Thanks Barbara, I am glad you enjoyed it!

  3. georgiafromga1 says:

    Glorious photos, Frances. How fabulous that you were at the ready with your camera to capture the beauty. I’m old enough to know the Ali reference and had a moment of worry that you would be ending your photo shoot with a bee sting. A trip down Memory Lane instead. Much better.

    Thanks, Georgia. Ali was the bee sting, what a wonder he was when younger. I was lucky with the butterfly, this one was very slow and allowed a clumsy photographer to get a bunch of shots off without flying away.

  4. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    Such fun seeing your butterfly. Ihave seen so few in our garden this year. That lily is beautiful too.

    Hi Lisa, thanks. We see fewer butterflies each year it seems. I was happy to capture this one in pixels. Black Beauty lily is a great one, highly recommended.

  5. Mark and Gaz says:

    Superb photography Frances!!

    Thanks Mark and Gaz! I appreciate your kind words.

  6. Gail says:

    She’s a beauty and your photos are fantastic. Isn’t the sky dazzling with flower and friend in front of it! I’ve had no luck capturing mine on film~Too many shadows and they flit away! But, I appreciate them being in the garden every time I see one. xoxogail

    Thanks Gail. Usually the butterflies are too fast, not staying put long enough for me to get close with the camera. This was a lucky day.

  7. Mohammed Ali certainly was the master of vivid and colorful hyperbole…but then he backed it up with superb and effective technique. The beautiful butterfly, on the other hand, is silent but even more sublime in its graceful physicality. The photos are mesmerizing.

    Hi Michaele, thanks. Ali was amazing to watch, no matter how one felt about him. He was exciting and unpredictable.

  8. Cindy, MCOK says:

    Wow! The Tiger Swallowtails are such beautiful creatures … you got some amazing shots!

    Hi Cindy, thanks. I was lucky that day, and the butterfly was huge and beautiful.

  9. Dee says:

    Isn’t she lovely? I saw one in my garden last week, and she was moving quickly. I did get a few shots. Saw some other butterflies today. I took photos too. How could I not. They are the queens of the summer garden.~~Dee

    Thanks Dee. These really are the queens of the gardens. It is always exciting to see them, and the hummers.

  10. Ricki Grady says:

    Even by upgrading the camera equipment, I could not aspire to such great wildlife shots (enough trouble capturing the beauty of flowers, who usually agree to hold still). No need, since you have done it for us. Thanks!

    Thanks for those kind words, Ricki.

  11. Sadun blogi says:

    I love your pictures!

    Thanks Sadun!

  12. Cyndi says:

    Your blog is so fabulous Frances! The photography is fascinating; how you can capture nature and its occupants is amazing! You DO have one mean camera and know how to use it! I so enjoy your sharing your life in the garden with us. It amazing how that beautiful lily is captured, the stamen is so amazing. I had a couple in my yard last week and I think I should delete my photo’s I took. LOL! Thanks again for the joy your share! Smiles, Cyndi

    Hi Cyndi, thanks for your support and those kind words. I do so appreciate you! I hope you are kidding about deleting your photos, I take hundreds to get one decent one, and sometimes get lucky when a butterfly will allow me to get close up.

  13. Elizabeth McLeod says:

    I too have Lillium Black Beauty plants in our garden and I can’t wait for a local monarch butterfly to feast on them! Your photos were amazing. I never tire of your blog. Thanks again from British Columbia, Canada.

    Hi Elizabeth, thanks so much for those kind words. I am so happy to hear you also have Black Beauty. It gets better and better every year. Lucky you with local monarchs. We see an occasional one traveling through our garden in the fall each year and celebrate with the camera!

  14. Barbara pc says:

    Frances – photos are fantastic – tried to capture one the other day, cannot believe how fluttery (adhd?) they are compared to the monarchs. Thanks for the smile – Ali was my dad’s all-time favourite boxer.

    Hi Barbara, thanks. Some of the butterflies are impossible to capture on pixels, they move around very quickly and erratically. I think this one was fresh out of the cocoon, it was quite slow. I loved watching Ali in his prime, too, he was something.

  15. Linda says:



  16. Carlos says:

    Hello again!

    You got some fantastic snapshots in here, you’re a true photographer! I’m surprised the butterfly wasn’t all shy and zip-zoomed away when you drew near. Her colorful orange passionate wings match up greatly with the flower she smartly decided to feast upon…

    -Carlos Hernandez

    Hi Carlos, Thanks for those kind words. This butterfly was slow and ignored me completely. I was lucky that day.

  17. I had swallowtail caterpillars on the dill and hope they emerge in the garden eventually. So lovely as both caterpillars and butterflies!

    Hi Donna, thanks for adding in here. I hope you get butterflies soon, but agree that the catts are very cute!

  18. Pretty pretty!! Love the lilies as does the Swallowtail !!!

    Thanks Janet. Black Beauty had a spectacular year this time. What a wonderful lily!

  19. Rose says:

    Beautiful images, Frances! I’ve followed butterflies all over my garden to get photos, but have never captured as many amazing images as you have.
    I never was a fan of boxing, but Ali was certainly a fascinating figure. We are particularly interested in him at our house–until recently, my son-in-law was his massage therapist. The last time I visited my daughter before they moved, she was baking cupcakes for him.

    Thanks Rose. I was lucky that day. I am so impressed about your near-experience with Ali! What a connection to The Champ. There will never be another like him.

  20. Pingback: 2013 Fairegarden Calendar « Fairegarden

Comments are closed.