Monday, July 30, 2007

Butterflies Are (Almost) Free

Butterflies are free, once you have planted the plants to attract them.

One nice thing about our dry weather this summer is I can "set a spell" on the deck and watch the butterflies, hummingbirds, wrens, finches, rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, etc. as they come and go.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Weed Seeds

I am not the most energetic weeder on the planet, preferring early scuffle hoe use followed by mulch to keep things under control, but this dry summer has resulted in a shortage of grass clippings, so some weeds got away from me. Then the clay soil would not surrender the weeds until - at last! - we received some rainfall recently. Just in time, too, as the errant weeds were starting to produce seed heads.

My yard is a work in progress, and each year has its share of experiments. One successful (at least, so far) experiment this year was the growing of greens for my bunny Hip Hop. When the mescaline I planted with the snap peas started to bolt, I planted more in a 6" x 24" planter that gets filtered light on the deck. I'm harvesting from that now, and have made a fall planting of more mescaline and snap peas. That rabbit is so spoiled.

(Mystery: why have the wild rabbits decimated my green bean plants but not touched the lettuces on the deck, even though they live below the deck? Knock on wood!)

I just can't get enough of that hibiscus.

And the chrysanthemums on the south side of the house are already blooming.

But these buggers are about to meet their maker. Ordinarily, when it comes to insects and spiders and other creepy crawlies, I'm a live-and-let-live kind of person - unless they come inside my house. The ceiling over the Florida room is a gray area, and in previous years I have let them be. They are not there every year, but this year they are more numerous than usual, and getting a little huffy about my using the door. So I am afraid they will have to go.

Still, I am not looking forward to this little task.