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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Southern Garden in January

Why I garden in the South

sulfur yellow butterfly
A vegetable garden full of henbit is kind of embarrassing, but the butterflies like it fine... They say that God doesn't make junk....

Painted lady butterfly

The butterflies seem to be happy with the weeds...

gulf fritillary butterfly

Not just butterflies in the garden on this fine January day, I found a blue-tailed skink and a frog too!

The pictures click...

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Sunday, January 22, 2012

Winter Rain

We are in a deficit for rain this year, just a few weeks in... We were seriously hurting last year...

Seeing any kind of clouds in the sky is a hopeful event.

This looks very good...

It's coming!


Lots of rain!

Raindrops hitting the rainwater that fell faster than the thirsty sand could absorb it...

Raindrops on the winter burned golden rod.

An inch and a quarter of rain in a single storm...
The rain Gods were very kind.

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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - January 2012

I discovered gardener blogger's bloom day last month, too late to post. Seems like a pretty neat concept, the garden changes from month to month, if there isn't different flowers, the flowers we have look different.

First off, howsa bout some weeds?

henbit close-up
chickweed close-up
Chickweed and henbit, pretty if shot with a macro, but not something desirable...

I'm pulling weeds as fast as I can...

early spirea bloom
early forsythia bloom
Some early bloom on the bridal wreath spirea and forsythia.

The highlight of the garden is the hellebore.
They've produced additional open blooms since last month, and peak bloom is still a month or two away...

hellebore, blush

hellebore, bloom with streaks

The colours when the blooms initially open is always exciting.
Sadly, most people only know hellebores by those green displays at lenten service.

hellebore, spotted bloom
hellebore, white bloom

I'm unable to post camellia blooms from this garden yet. The freezing temps last week did those for me. While I'm seeing plenty of camellias in other gardens, I think it would violate the spirit of the post to post the plants that I'm not growing in this garden.

mahonia, past their peak

I still have mahonia in bloom, but it seems past it's peak...

Dalea pinnata
daffodils, lantana stalks

Daffy-dills blooming through the lantana stalks, and summer's farewell seed heads. Be sure to click the pictures on this post... Those Dalea pinnata seed heads look surreal when enlarged.

We could all learn a lot about concentration and patience from a cat... She can stare at a brush pile for hours...

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Wednesday, January 11, 2012


I was mentioned on a post yesterday.

After looking at her pictures of mosses and lichens, I went out and shot some of mine.

This feels like a Christmas post, and my apologies for not thinking of it sooner... Some people put out a bale of hay for Santa's reindeer, but I'm not sure that the reindeer would actually benefit from hay. Seems like they would get sick after spending the year eating lichens and moss.

brain lichenThis patch of Cladonia rangiferalichen looks like brains.

It felt like they were contemplating the nature of the universe, while I looked on.

Like the Douglas Adams computer Deep Thought, who gave us the answer "42".

I think these babies might come up with an answer that is more relevant to our day to day struggles...
I will admit that these guys figure prominently in my plans for the zombie apocalypse. If I led them past a group of brain lichens, they might get confused. If that doesn't work, I'll lead them through the saw briars and hawthorns.

lichen bloom
Lichens are a diverse group of plants, in just a small area, I was able to capture some wildly different forms.

Looks like this Cladonia cristatella (british soldier lichen) is blooming... Be sure to click the pictures to see them better.

lichen thread
lichen threads
Coupla thready ones.
The Dragonriders of Pern are expected momentarily.

plate lichen
plate lichen

Flat ones, plate-like

Parmotrema perlatum

lichen growing in moss

Small ones growing up through the moss.

river of lichen
Stream of lichen... Most gardeners produce the dry stream bed effect using rock...



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