A few days ago, I saw a new-to-me wasp, dining on the Texas kidneywood in our back yard. I didn't have a camera with me so I missed getting any shots. But lucky me, she came back! This time, I was armed and managed to click off a few shots before she got away.
Meet the great golden digger wasp (Sphex ichneumoneus). According to Bugguide.net, the female of this species "digs burrow almost vertically. Cells are dug radiating out from central tunnel. Larvae are provisioned with crickets, camel crickets, katydids (long-horned grasshoppers). One paralyzed prey is placed in each cell, and one egg is laid on it. One generation per year."
As part of their "Beneficials in the Garden" series, the Galveston County Master Gardeners have a longer species account here.