Archives for posts with tag: bumble bees

2017summergardeni1

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2012summermonarch2

There were some of these beauties flying about, but I didn’t get my camera out until they left. Unusually more monarch butterflies this summer than the last three years. I saw them all over the place, which is great. This the first time though, that as caterpillars, they were in my garden feasting on the milkweed. I counted at least twelve of them.

2017summercatapillar

They are in their pupae stage now, which I have not been able to spot, but I hope they come around again as third generation ones. The picture below was taken in the summer of 2012.

2012summermonarch1

The image below was taken in the summer of 2013 of the bumble bee partaking in the hydrangea bush, their favorite this time of year.

2013summerhydreangeabee

2017summerlotus6

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A really good year for fall colors, they seemed to last for a long time too. The skies were mostly clear, bringing out the vivid reds and oranges in the leaves. The cosmos that I planted in the spring had thick, bright green foliage for what seemed forever and then when September rolled around, it started to bloom. The plant is still blooming now and we’re having some very cold nights. I did take a lot of pictures of the hydrangea Little Lamb because it kept getting more and more saturated in pink hues. There was one evening, as the sun was setting, the sky lit up the same color as the hydrangea flowers. It was pink, pink and more pink.

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In this spring and summer garden there were more frogs than in the past and more bumble bees than I’d seen in ten years. However, there were hardly any honey bees (just a few when the milkweed bloomed) and so far, one monarch butterfly. They usually come around at the end of summer.

Placing pots flush with the ground, filled with water helped bring more frogs and leaving a foot of long grass around the borders where clover could grow met some of their needs as well as the bumble bees. They also seemed to enjoy the addition of water lettuce in their pools. This time around I added more plants to the front, North side of the house, as well as a small water garden in a tall blue pot, where tiny frogs came to hide. There in the shade, the Coleus took off along with the Creeping Jenny.

One of the new flowers in this mix was the Mexican Red Torch, lighting up the place with it’s truly vibrant petals. The stems and leaves are so velvety soft. An intriguing plant it is, as it is slow to bloom, growing lots of  large leaves. It is still creating more buds and continues to bloom.

As far as the vegetables that were grown, the most successful was the Swiss Chard, onions and the strange looking carrots (such intense flavor). Unfortunately, the tomatoes took for ever to get going, the potatoes looked like food for the Lilliputs and the eggplants were devoured by pests. The corn grew small as well, but, it has yet to be picked, since it’s popping corn.

All in all, it was an amazing summer; warm, hot, cool in all the right places and not too rainy. Taking great advantage of it by being outside as much as I could, made for some nice shots.