The Garden - Fall 2011
The long hot summer eased almost seamlessly in to a hot dry fall. We had the occasional thunderstorm, but the drought persisted.
In spite of the drought, or perhaps because of it, the milkweed, that I had planted last year and had re-seeded all through the front border and in the back garden, was very popular with the native Carpenter bees.
It was also popular with this Pipevine Swallowtail...
... and later with the butterfly for which I planted it, the Monarch.
It was rather sad that we didn't see many Monarchs this year, and no caterpillars that I know of -- in spite of the impressive stands of milkweed in the front and the back. I hope they come back en masse next year.
However 2011 was the year for hummingbirds. I have never seen so many hummingbirds in my life!
They kept me entertained for hours throughout September. I put several feeders out, spread around the garden. At at first one male would spend all his time chasing all the others away from the feeders. But finally everyone just settled down and decided to share and I managed to get photos of several females at the feeder at one -- a first for me.
And to my delight, the Firecracker bush put on a burst of blooms which were enjoyed by the males.
So, as brutal as 2011 was, it was a wonderful year for us and our garden. To cap it off, the garden was recognized as a Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation.
I'm proud to display the plaque on our gate.