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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Safari

It was like an African safari at my house over the weekend... tigers and zebras!

Georgia's state butterfly.... the tiger swallowtail.



 Zebra swallowtail...


 Also had buckeye and Gulf fritillary butterflies out enjoying the nice February weather.

Of interest... is what flowers they are nectaring at. I have creeping phlox, daffodils, and hellebore in full bloom.... and redbuds, sassafras trees in bloom... and the butterflies are visiting the henbit and chickweed!
 Had these cute birds acting like love was in the air...

The goldfish were acting like they were sunning themselves... like a cat or a butterfly... never really thought about fish enjoying the weather...

For a nice day... started out a bit chilly... a bit of frost on  the rutabaga...

View of the house.... from behind the cut down smilax.

Wisteria and jessamine... Doesn't it seem a bit early for wisteria to be blooming?

Finally caught one!
These things are simply destroying the vegetable garden, and set the trap... catch cats... bait the trap with cat food, you know...

 

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Early Spring

The weatherman on television has been complaining about a lack of winter.... That 9 days out of the first two weeks of Feb have been reaching above 70, with more seventies called for for the next seven days too.... doesn't bother me, none.... of course... means that all the winter wood I cut last summer is still sitting there.... I've been burning the left-overs from the previous winter...


Doesn't hurt anything for the firewood to sit in a pile in the yard... when I eventually get it cleaned up, I'll have another place to put in a flower bed. Something about a pile of wood... leaves the soil more productive...

The Carolina Jessamine is going full on.

Seems like the pear trees have been going for a month....

Plum... Can't say what kind... but has the tiniest flowers...
Person I got it from... called it a chickasaw plum,  it does seem to be the same as the Kansas sandhill plum... If different from what I've been calling a Sandhill plum...

The hellebore got kind of a late start this winter....

10 pound rat, anyone?
Possums and raccoons are simply destroying the vegetable garden this winter... I get tiny seedlings emerging, and these pests show up and turn everything under.
And... what they did to my pear trees last autumn...

Sparse turnips... Ok, Ima start cooking these up... directly.

Using the chainsaw to cut back the smilax thicket.... a slow job, and.... I might be robbing the birds of habitat... But did you ever attempt to walk through a smilax patch?

 

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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

December colours

 Before the rain, deer in the weeds
Deer refusing to participate in a photo shoot.

Helpful house guest! jumping spider, with fly.



Sassafras colour assortment

Potted citrus, bursting with flowers

4 inches of rain over a period of 2 weeks... finally!

brush piles
Now maybe I can burn a brush pile or two without setting the county on fire... 
New vegetable garden space soon.


cardinal eating chenopodium seed
The songbirds seem to be very happy with the chenopodium seed...

Killing frost is coming this weekend.... just as the tomatoes were finally gearing up to produce...


Spotted a trail leading from the brush under the garden fence... good place to put the trap... caught Thumper.
Happy cats!

 

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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Changing Weather

While there are still butterflies and flowers, veggies in the garden, the drought makes pictures of them unremarkable. Once the weather changes, I start aiming the camera at the songbirds.... They're a lot more difficult to shoot than the butterflies are....

Towhee

Some kinda wren...

Mockingbird... Kinda unusual to catch these guys on the ground...

Cardinal... peaking around the iris... I'm catching these birds at the goldfish pond....

The goldfish don't seem to mind...

As interesting as the mockingbird on a rock was, this woodpecker on the ground was really cool.

Hmm... the audubon website sez they eat fish... 

Is this guy eating seeds or catching pine sawfly caterpillars?

I took a pic of those guys a couple weeks ago....


Spotted a (ripe) tomato this morning.... This one is in a tomato cage.... all the tomatoes that I left sprawling.... are getting eaten by the cats... before they even start turning!

And.... stupid possums and raccoons are causing plenty of heartache in the garden too....

I plant carrots and turnips, rutabagurs, and when I water.... it attracts varmints that till the moist ground.... not good for seedlings. 

Had a light frost this week.... covered some stuff with bed sheets, but even the stuff I missed... probably didn't burn enough to prevent the fruit from ripening.

Finally, some autumn colour, sassafras above and osage orange below.

Very impressive drought going on here in the Southeast.... 
Map borrowed from the drought monitor site

And... The smoke from those fires is affecting us...

 

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Dry Autumn

Very dry here... we've had 2 hurricanes and a tropical storm blow through, and haven't seen any precipitation from any of it...

I  visited a butterfly garden a couple months ago, and snuck out with a seed head or two...
The seeds came up readily from this seasons plants....
I count 6 butterflies in this pic...

The cosmos seems to have attracted a couple of migrants... monarch and long wing zebra... first time seeing either this year.... Unfortunately, neither stuck around long...

I do have a few other flowers....
Bee visits prenanthes

Buckeye butterfly visiting daisy mum.
Another pic of the daisy mums

What's funny, is this mexican clover (Richardia scabra), at the foot of the daisy mums... actually seems like the bigger attraction... as far as the butterflies are concerned!

camellia oleifera in bed next to house

First year crop from the black walnuts... Wish I'd recorded what year I planted the seeds.

Sunflower growing through the sassafrass....

The beetles are killing the pines...




 

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