Monday, May 24, 2010

Saturday Evening Walk-About

This is one of the birdhouses J. constructed. It was meant for the bluebirds, but it is claimed by a pair of tree swallows.

The magnolia tree is preparing to blossom.  I have thought of them as a deep south species, thus it was a surprise to discover one in our yard. I hope the weather favors it.

The leaves and the buds have a graceful shape.

The last of the Iris. The rain hasn't been kind to them, but they fared better than the second-blooming  peony plant whose beautiful deep pink flowers were battered and bowed by the storms.

No idea what this is. I pruned this shrub radically last month. Once the blossoms are fully out, I may come up with a tentative ID.

This is a bamboo hedge.  It has grown alarmingly in the wet days.  J. thought the mockingbird had a nest in the branches, but we both gave up trying to force our way in to see.

The garlic plants. These quirky seed heads delight me.

Honeysuckle vine naturalizes all over the southern US to the point of being a pest.
The scent is heavily sweet and carries hauntingly on the breeze.

The wet weather has created colonies of "toadstools" under the maple trees.

I can't get a good photo of the cardinals' nest in this un-named tall shrub outside the dining room sliding door.

I tried standing [precariously] on the heat pump and using zoom--still not a clear photo.
The babies have hatched and both parents are busy bringing food to the nest.

What is this?  It grows all over the lawn.  It looks like strawberries in both leaf style and fruit.  Believe me, these are not strawberries.  I tried two of them and they are nasty tasting.  Even the birds aren't eating them!

A corner of the recently planted flower border. The lavender-blues of veronica and salvia contrast with achillea "moonshine."

The moon riding an evening sky.
Seconds before, a skein of birds moved darkly across the blue space.  They were vanished in the time it took for the camera shutter to click.


  1. What a wonderful post, Sharon. You paint pictures with words. I loved all the photos...especially the little bird that had taken over the bluebird's house! He or she looked perfectly at home there. That leaves of the mystery plant definitely looked like strawberries but with cherries growing on them! Wonder what it is?!?


  2. I keep wanting to comment on your banner photo but by the time I get through your post I've been distracted. Anyway, he/she/ looks very much like Bailey. I think an up-side down post is hilarious.
    You have a lot of new plants and shrubs to identify in your new home. You'll have to buy a book on local flora and fauna!

  3. Your garden is coming on apace. I am sure it is givign you much pleasure - despite the recent rain, oh and those horrid ticks!

    I "think" I can send you seeds. I will try, once my Aquilegias have set seed this year (flowering now) and see if I get chucked out on the pavement . . .

  4. I wonder if your mystery white flowered shrub is a variety of Syringa ( lilac family)?

    No idea about the cherry fruited strawberry.....

    J must be thrilled to see that his bird house is being used already. Where do those swallows migrate from? European summer swallows migrate to and from Africa. Do yours travel between North and South America?

  5. Have just had a wonderful catch up after being away at my sons place.
    I so loved the mouse story and pictures ...I couldn't have killed them either. Could your berries be Wild Strawberries ???