Sunday, June 29, 2008

Sunday Safari - Including Dragonflies

Blue Damselfly

I'm doing a Sunday Safari again in an effort to find what insects visit my garden. Last week I joined Cheryl at My Wildlife Sanctuary and Sherry at Q's Corner in a safari. We've had some nice rain lately, but today is calm and could do a walk about. Above isn't the promised dragonflies, but a blue damselfly -- there are a number flying around.

Here I think is my first dragonfly picture of the year. I spotted one a week ago, but didn't have a camera. It's not quite the time of year when they're buzzing mosquitoes overhead, but it is welcome to see them starting to arrive.


I was surprised by this dragonfly as I was picking peas...just resting with wet wings from rains.


I got this grasshopper nymph before it could hop away...

Grasshopper Nymph

Two unidentified insects. I'm sure with a little research I can id them. The second was resting on the bird net over the strawberries.

Okay, hoverflies...not very exiting but there is an abundance of them. Many in the wildflowers and swarms over the radish flowers and baby's breath.


Lots of "daddy-longlegs" lurking in the foliage. Apparently this is more correctly a harvestman not to be confused with the "daddy-longlegs spider". This harvestman is an arachnid but not a spider and completely harmless to humans...well most insects and spiders are pretty much harmless to humans since they don't seek us out.


The Disonycha Leaf Beetles are still hiding in the wildflowers. Now I was told they eat "weeds", but they are of course eating the wildflower leaves. I will have to educate them on the definition of a weed in my garden. Actually there are only some holes in lower level leaves that get little sun anyways.

Disonycha Leaf Beetle

Ants tugging on something.


Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

"Wildflower" Blooms

With onset of summer and hotter temperatures, our wildflower garden has begun to bloom. Of course these are captive wildflowers that we planted from seed in our yard. This spot always has some color and activity. Many of the plants are perennial or reseed. In spring we sometimes sow some annual seeds to ensure a good show.

Here are some shots of the wildflower garden bed.

Sweet Williams

Silene Vaccaria pyramidata (Dairy Pink) [Updated: Thanks Connie!]


Bachelor's Button emerging

Many shades of bachelor's buttons

Many shades of Spurred Snapdragons


Sunday, June 22, 2008

Safari Sunday (Too)

Sherry at Q's Corner and Cheryl at My Wildlife Sanctuary decided to do a safari for insects today. I just couldn't resist, so I am making a post about my garden insects. (Above) It seems that one kind of bee (mason bee?) likes the radish blooms and another (honey bee) the chives. Year after year the chives never fail to attract the honey bees. One thing I haven't spotted this year is butterflies in the garden. On to the rest of the captures (for some other shots, see my post Insects - Beetle from Tuesday).

Here's another shot at the radish blooms.

A damselfly resting on what I think is a catch-fly (Silene) Vaccaria pyramidata (Dairy Pink) flower. This one looks different from the one I saw Tuesday. I have spotted one dragonfly this year, but no photos yet.

Just a resting hoverfly.

Thanks for visiting and check out the other safaries.

Strawberry Sunday

As in it's Sunday and we got strawberries! I had to make a special post for them. In the paper it said they were late this year (by my records they are), but that they would be a good harvest of large juicy berries...Yum!

Scouting on Friday revealed the above almost ready berry. There are many just waiting to ripen. So, up comes the bird net. I'm not sacrificing any more than I have to. Besides, they can eat the ones I cull from bug and slug damage.

(Left) That first berry picked and eaten Saturday -- it was great! (Right) The first bunch for Sunday breakfast. Now it's berry picking every morning for a couple of weeks.

Oh, and to compliment the strawberries some shelling peas and sugar snap peas.