As you know from earlier posts, we have a passionflower plant growing above one of the gates to the backyard and patio. It is a Passiflora parritae x tarminiana‘Oaklandia’ that we purchased from Annies Annuals https://www.anniesannuals.com/ I knew that passionflower plants attract butterflies, but only recently learned that this is the only host plant for Gulf Fritillary butterflies. Before I learned this, we observed Gulf Fritillary butterflies spending a lot of time around
Here is an Anna's hummingbird approaching one of the salvia plants in the afternoon. As you can see, it gets very bright here in the afternoon, and very warm. And suddenly a hummingbird will fly to one of the salvia plants, California fuchsia or lavender for the nectar. I'm so glad to see how the salvia plants are starting to spread out and produce new foliage and blossoms. More nectar for the hummingbirds and bees. Here is the same hummingbird feeding on the nectar from one
I'm starting to see more carpenter bees visiting the garden. This California Carpenter Bee female Xylocopa californica was very interested in the patch of Coreopsis Grandiflora flowers. In the image above you see her approaching the Coreopsis Grandiflora Heliot flowers. Her wings are beating so quickly that all you see is her shiny, stout body which seems to defy gravity. Here she is collecting pollen and feeding on the nectar of one of the flowers. Then she visited the neig
Last week when I came home from work in the early evening I discovered this Summer Long-Horned male bee Melissodes robustior sleeping on the tip of a petal of the Delta sunflower Helianthus annuus . We usually have a strong breeze starting up every evening, so the bee swayed along with the flower, fast asleep. The next morning before I left for work, I saw the bee in the same position, waiting for temperature to rise. That next evening I saw either the same Summer Long-Horned
Sometimes those hover flies just seem to be everywhere I look in the native garden. They are very attracted to the cosmos blossoms. And these are the same size as most bees, so if you don't pay close attention to them, you might think they are bees. The hover fly above is sipping nectar from a cosmos orange sulphur klondike blossom. This hover fly is in a cosmos cupcakes white blossom. Very beautiful distinctive markings on this fly.
The Carolina climbing aster Aster carolinianus is growing very well. We planted it, as a seedling, this year in March (see image below), and it is now thriving. I was concerned at first that maybe it wasn't getting enough sun. We make sure that it doesn't dry it and give it some grape seed compost once a month. It will be so exciting to see it bloom this autumn with lovely purple asters which will attract butterflies and bees. This was what the aster looked like this year in
I spotted this lovely little male common checkered-skipper pyrgus communis on one of the buckwheat plant flower heads. It is a very lovely butterfly with a wing span of just 1 to 1 1/2 inches. The fuzzy body is a striking blue-gray.
Ah, here is another yellow-faced bumble bee bombus vosnesenskii collecting pollen from a California poppy. These bees are so much fun to observe because they plop down into the poppy blossoms and then roll around, collecting pollen on their bodies. Look at the size of the pollen basket (the large orange sack on the side of the abdomen). Still hard at work.
Very inspiring UK video! So true about lambs ears - I always observe mostly wool carder bees on the flowers, and the males are VERY territorial. I sometimes feel they try to look menacing when I stand near the plants. And I had no idea how much bees love dahlias until I planted a Bishops Children dahlia in a large container on our patio this summer. They visit those flowers all day long as long as the sun is shining. I now plan to plant marjoram since it attracts and feeds th
It is so funny to see the local large birds using the bird bath. The small and medium sized birds, such as California towhees, House finches, sparrows and the occasionally hummingbird, literally bathe and swim there. And the larger birds don't want to miss out on the fun. A few days ago I saw this fledgling crow (yes it is full-sized, but is missing some adult plumage) in the bird bath. First it sat on the rim of the bath, then climbed on to the small stone in the bath. There