Monday, June 18, 2018

A nested hypothesis

A juvenile finch (is it a house finch or a purple finch?) just days before it flew away. There are now two such nests atop our front door:

The Monarch of all Weeds

Hoping to see some Monarch butterflies at my Milkweed Row. I don't think there have been many these past few years! Could the interspersed day-lilies be scaring them away?

Monday, June 11, 2018

Bugged by weeds

I was pulling out weeds from the cracks in my driveway when I stopped after seeing this beautiful sight:

I pulled out my cell phone instead, and snapped a quick picture. Not that the ladybug was in any hurry to leave!

I left the weed alone, to fight another day.

Friday, June 01, 2018

Flocks of phlox, and other spring miscellania

These are recovering nicely along our stone wall after I shifted them out of the pots they inhabited unhappily for several years:

The alium bulbs I planted last year are alive and well! This is a minor miracle, since the rest of the bulbs I bought at Kmart last year were rotted in the bag and had to be returned:

Bleeding hearts resurrected. One of the small set of reliable shade-loving perennials that can add color without much light and tolerate New England winters:

It's Azalea-time!

I planted these azaleas right below the roof-line, which is perhaps not ideal. The snow sliding off the roof tends to flatten the plants, and they are still quite small. Yet they have bloomed a bit this year. I'll perhaps have to engineer some contraptions to keep the snow away from them for a while:

Thursday, May 24, 2018

A Beautiful and Fragrant Invasion

Some Lily of the Valley plants seem to have migrated from all the way across the street. Pretty and poisonous!

This is a purple-and-white orchid columbine from Home Depot:

A pink-and-white version planted in the same area decided it has had enough of the vacillating spring already. Perhaps it will come back stronger next year?

Of Bleeding Hearts and Azaleas

The bleeding hearts are back with a bang after it looked like they had not survived the fall season, let alone the winter. What a lesson in resilience! It likes the shade too, which is a huge blessing in my yard:

Our two fledgling azaleas are beginning to come into their own. They get snow dumped on them from the roof above, yet somehow find the extra will to bloom in the spring:

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Cost-effective lawn maintenance

You too can have a great-looking lawn without spending tonnes of money on seeding, fertilizers and water bills. The key is to give it a good mow, find the right spot to stand in, and wait for the optimal lighting conditions. If it rains once in a while, even better.

My scraggly lawn is pictured below, photographed after a fresh morning mowing followed by light rains. The evening cloud cover provides just the right luminous intensity to hide the numerous barren patches strewn about :-)