While the weather started to take a frosty turn, we decided to take a trip to the tropical greenhouse in Wisley Gardens where it was currently home to many different species of exotic Butterflies.
It was definitely a change in environment as you stepped into the greenhouse; you left the winters chill behind and felt a humid warmth all around you. Going through the entrance, it felt like I had butterflies in my stomach, not having the best experiences when it comes to insects I was slightly worried as to how I would react if one was to fly close to me. Nervously looking around I couldn’t see any that were close enough to cause me to panic.
At first it seemed impossible to spot any butterfly that wasn’t flying around in the air, but when having a closer look and seeing where everybody else was looking it suddenly became a lot easier. Attempting to get over my fear and to try and get a good photo, I was crouching down and getting as close as I could. I felt as long as they didn’t fly they were okay.
Looking amongst the huge leaves and the bright flowers of the exotic plants, which are very different to what you might find in an English garden, you could come across some of the most beautiful specimens of Butterflies. Whether they had their wings open or closed there was something amazing about their appearance. When wings closed they tended to be more earthy colours but with the most fascinating patterns that would either allow them to hide within their environment or warn off predators. When the butterflies opened their wings you never knew what to expect. With a range of colours and patterns each one was unique with their wings open. They could be the brightest of greens to the deepest of blues or a flash of pink or red.
Starting to feel comfortable with the butterflies flying around I tried to get close to this yellow and black one, not staying still for more than a second, it was impossible to get on camera, but it would fly close to your face, and although it took me a while to stop flinching I eventually did. The butterflies were very tame and were not afraid to land on people; it was a wonderful sight to watch.
It was such an incredible experience visiting the Butterfly greenhouse, a little tropical paradise in the middle of winter. It allowed me to partially overcome my fear of insects flying around me, and was overall a good trip out. One that I would recommend for all people.
By Gemma of Holley Designs