Saturday, July 12, 2008

Summer is Here!

Summer is in full swing around Robin's Nesting Place. A few volunteer sunflowers, (compliments of the bird feeders), are beginning to bloom. Most of them are small and insignificant, but this one was a beauty. I also planted a variety mix that is growing fast and will be blooming soon.

The butterflies have finally arrived! I've been watching for them for several weeks and was beginning to wonder if they were avoiding my butterfly garden.

The Monarchs seem to prefer the coneflowers.

I'm not 100% sure if this one is a comma or a question mark butterfly, but it looks like a comma to me.

The liatris is blooming.

The bumblebees and wasps are plentiful here this year. I don't mind the bumblebees and will get pretty close to get a picture. They are always so busy they don't seem to notice. The wasps, on the other hand, are given wide berth.

I have several projects that need to be completed. I moved a few plants and have holes in the butterfly garden. I bought some topsoil a few weeks ago to fill the holes and never got around to doing it. I'm a little concerned about using this top soil. Can you imagine the weeds I'll have in my garden?
Along with summer comes the pests. Thousands of Japanese beetles have descended and are devouring the sweet potato vines, roses, and birch tree leaves along with other plants and leaves. One of the arborvitae was covered with small bagworms, which seems to to be their plant of choice. Last year I got really interesting pictures of the worm.

I hope these are not the eggs of the bagworm. I'll be keeping a close eye out for this arborvitae, just in case. Thankfully it hasn't been to hot and we've had plenty of rain, so I've only had to water plants a few times.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

26 comments:

Meems said...

Summer is definitely in full swing when all the pretties have the pesky bugs right next to them. Everybody has their pests... in the north and in the south I guess. Those beetles do a number on your garden... that's one we don't have surprisingly.

All your pretties are quite vibrant and beautiful. The buzzy, flying critters adding to the fun!

I hope your weekend is wonderful, too.
Meems @Hoe& Shovel

Amy said...

Such gorgeous photos with really brilliant colours. Just wonderful. We had volunteer sunflowers last year due to birdfeeders too. Our squirrel was making seed caches in my deck container plantings and we very puzzled when he came back to find flowers but no seeds!

Northern Shade said...

The first butterfly,on the coneflowers looks like an exclamation mark butterfly to me. I love monarchs. When I lived in Ontario, I used to go to Point Pelee National Park to see them at migration time. The butterflies rested there before crossing Lake Erie.

Perennial Gardener said...

That sunflower is gorgeous. And I love your butterfly pics, great shots. Have a nice weekend. Good luck with the bagworm...

Sheila said...

Great photos!

Balisha said...

I found lots of J. Beetles in my No. Illinois garden. I mixed one part of simple green to 15 parts of water and put it in a spray bottle. Sprayed the plants that the bugs were attacking. I don't have anymore beetles on the flowers that I sprayed. I still see them occasionally in the yard, but they haven't done anymore damage. It was so easy to do and I don't think it hurts the environment.
Have a nice weekend.

Rosehaven Cottage said...

Oh your photos in this post are GORGEOUS! The colors are delightfully bright and cheerful. I love the arrival of the butterflies and you've captured them beautifully.

Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

Debbie said...

Wonderful photos, Robin. I love the Monarch. I think you are a little ahead of us by the looks of what you have flowering. Our Liatris is still a week or so away.

Nicole said...

That topsoil came with a vegetable garden LOL. That's puslane in the foreground and what looks like amaranth in the back!
I love the sunflower shot.

Rose said...

Beautiful butterflies! I haven't seen any monarchs here yet; I hope this means they're on their way northeast.
I can relate to the Japanese beetles--they're thick here, too.

Sue Swift said...

Yes - I now have more pests than flowers to deal with :(

Rick said...

Robin-
I tried to send an email to inform, but alas, no contact info found. :-(
Anyway, I posted at my weblog a post that references your efforts here at Robin's Nesting Place. It is the post on The art of word smithing in a weblog...
Stop by, and I would love to hear some of your posting tips.

Joanne said...

Love the beautiful flowers. A friend asked me just today if I'd seen a Monarch butterfly yet. Glad to know they're on their way.

Gail said...

You always manage to catch the butterfly so beautifully perched on a flower! It's so much fun to stop by and see your photos and hear what is going on in your garden. The weekends over...I'm hoping you had a nice one!

Alicia said...

Love the blog. Wanted to add the RSS feed to my aggregator, but I get an error message. Oddly enough, I can subscribe to the comments. I thought you'd like to know. If you get it fixed, I'd like to know so I can subscribe.

I've added your blog to my blogroll, btw.

Cyndi said...

Thought I'd let you know that like some others have mentioned, I haven't been getting the RSS feed either... I just figured that you were busy with other things. Glad to see you're still taking those gorgeous shots!

Jon said...

My treat for today was visiting your lovely blog. I enjoy your photos and text very much. I must say insects of every shape, form, and fashion are in my garden this year....except sadly no bees due to the alarming CCD problem....which really worries me.
Best regards, Jon on 7-13-08 at Mississippi Garden

Karen said...

what lovely pictures, we've had plenty of rain and plenty of pests to boot! LOL, guess that goes along with summer (except maybe the rain part)

Karen said...

what lovely pictures, we've had plenty of rain and plenty of pests to boot! LOL, guess that goes along with summer (except maybe the rain part)

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Thanks for letting me know that my post aren't showing up in the RSS feed reader. I'm not really sure what happened but I changed some things today. Please let me know if they are showing up now.

Thank you all for the wonderful comments!

Rick, I stopped by your blog and left a comment regarding the pictures!

Dee/reddirtramblings said...

Robin, really interesting photos and commentary about the height of summer. It's that way here too, and I'm loving the garden.~~Dee

kd said...

When life gives you purslane check out the recipes online (http://www.epicurious.com/tools/searchresults?search=purslane)

Your photos are wonderful. My favourite is the bumblebee hovering next to the liatris -- not an easy shot.

The Giraffe Head Tree said...

WOW! Beautiful post, Robin! I LOVE the butterflies and bees!

Jayne said...

Your sunflower is beautiful Robin. That bag of topsoil *is* looking a bit scary. :c)
The Japanese Beetles are here in full force too, all over the crepe myrtle.

Yolanda Elizabet said...

I wondered where summer had gone but it's at your place :-) and how lovely it looks too. Here we had quite a lot of rain. Great pics Robin, I love butterflies and can never see enough pics of them.

Such a pity about those japanese beetles, they are really horrible.

My sunflowers are not out yet, eventhough the sun is shining today.

getgrounded said...

What an amazing blog you have! That sunflower picture is stunning - I could see CBS Sunday Morning news using it as one of their "suns" they use each week. I believe you have the best pictures I've seen on a garden blog (With Pam/Digging running right there with you). You are a talented gardener and photographer both. Thanks for letting me enjoy your garden with you. Robin at Getting Grounded