Thursday, June 24, 2010

Undaunted Daylilies

Undaunted daylilies thrive in roadside ditches, on deserted farmsteads, and on old gravesites with no one but Mother Nature tending them. Unbothered by insects or disease, they multiply without becoming invasive. For a few weeks in midsummer they burst into bloom, a cheerful sight wherever they live.

In my garden I grow a double orange variety passed along to me by my aunt, and a green-throated red variety, 'Pardon Me,' that I bought at a discount store. A frilly unnamed variety grows next to the common orange daylily out front by our sentry light.
Daylilies bloom as they are named: each blossom opens in the morning and closes the same night, then it is finished. Plentiful new blooms show daily for a few weeks--a nice, steady show. Grassy green foliage provides a lush filler for the flower bed for the remainder of the season.
Any plant that can do all that--with no care whatsoever on my part--gets a thumbs up from me. Daylily photo by JulenaJo.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Tiger, tiger.

Tiger, tiger burning bright

In my garden, a delight!

Birds and butterflies abound in the garden of 2010. I've witnessed the fledging of a brood of bluebirds, and an industrious wren couple has recently set up housekeeping. Chipping sparrow babies are to be found all over the yard, flitting after their parents, noisily demanding to be fed.

A mockingbird has graced us with its presence, singing at all hours of the day and night--even at 3:30 a.m! I followed a crested flycatcher pair around the yard as I attempted to identify them. Obviously, I finally got close enough to do so. Barn swallows have put a nest on our front porch. It's inconvenient to have them swooping defensively at anyone who braves the front door, but they eat insects, so we're happy to have them.

I've seen tiger swallowtails, like the one pictured above on a buddleia, sampling nectar in the garden, and also ruby-throated hummingbirds. I try to plant flowers known to draw hummingbirds and butterflies. Coral bells, nepeta (pictured below), salvia and buddleia are all magnets for these colorful and entertaining garden visitors and they do well in my sun-drenched, zone 5 garden. Photos by JulenaJo.