Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Bee-ware milkweed

While out surveying our antelope horns in the Meadow, I stopped to check out what was hanging out on the blooms. Sadly, I found a dead bee on one head. This is the first time I've observed a death caused by the sac-like bundles called pollinia that pollinators pick up while gathering nectar. I'd read that sometimes bees or butterflies get trapped by the pollinia and died but had never seen that happen until this evening. Poor bee.
I took some photos of another bee (below) so you can see the sacs attached to her legs. Below, I linked to a couple of videos so you can see and understand the process more clearly. It's really pretty cool and unique.

Antelope horns survey

So I just did a walk-by survey of the antelope horns in the Meadow. This year I counted 16 milkweeds on our side and two on our neighbor's side–a grand total of 18. Last year, I counted 15 antelope horns in the Meadow. In 2015, I counted eight. Yay! Little by little, we're growing our numbers for the monarchs and other pollinators.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Irises and amaryllises

Wow. I started this blog nearly TEN years ago! One of the reasons why is that I wanted to have a sort of gardening journal. A place where I could jot down when I planted this or where we bought that. Which is what I'm going to do right now–give an update on some bulbs that we planted in the past.

In a flower bed in our front yard, purple and white bearded irises have bloomed ever since my daughter and I moved into this house in April 2002. The bulbs were planted by the previous (and original) homeowners, the Bendeles. Through the years, we've added amaryllises gifted to us at Easter. In October 2015, James and I planted some pink 'Beverly Sills' bulbs that I ordered from Tulipworld.com. This may be the first time they've bloomed.

In February 2016, Ed and Cathy gifted us with some 'Tarleton' irises straight from Tarleton University in Stephenville, Texas. Ed's mother, who recently left for heaven, was a long-time resident of our neighborhood and  a dear friend. As you can see, one of the bulbs has bloomed! Beautiful. Thank you, Ed and Cathy!

Friday, April 13, 2018

Stock tank semi clean-out

Sheryl's to-do list: Cut back horsetail rush, check! 

Instead of a full-fledged clean out, I just cut off the horde of roots from around the horsetail rush. I also stuck in a fertilizer tablet into the dwarf water lily. Fingers crossed for lots of flowers this summer! Thanks for the photos, James!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Windy day blooms

 Blue curls
  White avens
  Fragrant gallardia
  Prairie fleabane
 Wright's skullcap
  Blue-eyed grass

  Salvia 'May Night'
 Berlandier's sundrops
 Brazos penstemon

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Notes to myself

 Prairie nymphs (Herbertia lahue), transplanted from my mother's Kendall County property.
Non-native spring starflowers (Tristagma uniflorum), transplanted from Blanco.
 Mystery bulbs that Sheryl can't remember a thing about.....Pretty sad. I must be getting really old.
 Non-native grape hyacinths, transplanted from a vacant lot that will be developed (owned by Trinity Lutheran Church).
Fringed puccoon (Lithospermum incisum), transplanted from our Blanco County property.