The Common or English Ivy is one of the last flowering plants of late summer and early autumn. Its many clusters of flowers provide rich pollen & nectar for a wide range of insects, bees and bugs. On a warm autumn day, a good sized flowering ivy bush, like the one in Torfield, can be heard as well as seen as thousands of bees, wasps and hoverflies swarm noisily around it. As well as the insects, there were six red admiral butterflies and one peacock butterfly also enjoying the nectar there yesterday. The fruit of purple-black berries, which ripen in late autumn, provide an important food source for birds before the winter. As well as being a vital shelter for birds, hibernating chrysalises and occasionally the Brimstone butterfly. A real ‘conservation plant’, to be enjoyed for the wildlife it attracts.