A gardening and birding blog

Aug 31, 2013

Wildflower Wednesday: Clover

Wild clover on a sidewalk in Toyohashi, Japan. Caught two weeks ago on our morning walk to the coffee shop. It stayed on the flower long enough for me to take this picture. 

The butterfly is a Pale Grass Blue, native to Asia. I was delighted to see it feeds on clover blossoms.

For more wildflower pictures, visit Gail at Wildflower Wednesday

Aug 30, 2013

Japanese Maple: Green

I went under the tree in summer to take this photo some years back. This ornamental maple is getting more straggly due to the clay soil but it still looks good in the front yard. The leaves will turn yellow in the fall. 

Aug 28, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Day lilies

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I must have taken this photo at night. Hence the dark background.

Aug 27, 2013

Purple cone flowers

Someone saw birds selecting seeds from a row of purple cone flowers last year and thought it would be great to plant them in the garden. Why attract only butterflies and bees with flowers. Why not plant to draw birds as well?

I got a shot of this flower bed in front of a public building, with its combination of cone flowers, daylilies, and yellow daisies.

Aug 26, 2013

Pachysandra Gone Wild

Pachysandra terminalis 

This is the hardy groundcover, Pachysandra terminalis (Japanese Spurge), which I planted several years ago in the back yard, to cover a dip in the ground left after a cottonwood tree was removed by the former house owner. Now this creeping vine has spread in a thick cover where chipmunks hide.

Unfortunately, now it harbors mice or small rats which I saw darting out to feed on the birdseed that have fallen to the ground. This weekend we'll mow half of the pachysandra down and confine it to the dip in the ground. It had moved over into the grass, and though it looks lovely, it's gone wild, in more sense than one!

I may even stop feeding the birds for a while to make sure the rodents clear out. Where is that roving black neighborhood cat, the one that used to patrol the backyard in the mornings, now that I need it?

Aug 24, 2013

Pink Lotus

This lovely pink lotus was in water in a huge pot at the front door of a hotel in Irago, Japan by the sea. The pink lotus is considered by Buddhists as the "supreme lotus"; lotus flowers are the symbol of purity.

I got a shot of the lotus seeds in the pod as well as this almost perfect bud. 


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