Wednesday, April 25, 2012

You learn something new every day

Morphsuits: the world is ready for them. They do appear to be completely unsuitable for this climate. Modern material culture never ceases to amaze. Someone has these manufactured, and people buy them. The stereotypes displayed on the page of flag suits astound, also. Anyone checking out the Morphsuit site should not neglect the page of FAQs.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Newcomers of the season

This morning brought the sight of the first ripe tomato (a Sweet 100 growing in a pot), the first roses of Sharon (white with crimson centers), and the first blooms ever seen on a coreopsis plant that sprang up a few years ago and has never bloomed before. Extremely large deep pink rain lilies are appearing, from homey packages bought at Wheatsville.

Friday, April 20, 2012

So many sweet peas, so many loquats

We'll really miss all these when they're done for the season. There are many more towers of sweet peas, most using lantanas for support, but these views are the only ones that don't have homely backdrops supplied by neighboring vistas. Some of the loquats are turning into raisins of a sort on the trees. No branches have broken yet, but may are so laden that they're bent all the way to the earth. The ground is paved with loquat seeds. The fruits are now fermenting on the trees and on the ground, so there are some noisy nights, thanks to creature drunkenness. During the daytime, the loquats are covered in hundreds of red admiral butterflies, which drink the juice of the fruits, just as though it were nectar. Grackles are preoccupied with all those small moths that spring up from the ground.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Outdoor update

There are now a dozen different varieties of sweet peas, ranging in scent from soapy to spicy complexity. The latest arrival has a red-and-white striated flower. Just as the milkweeds are trying to put forth new leaves, more caterpillars are there to consume them. We haven't found even one chrysalis, so some creature must be eating the larvae before they reach that stage. A second type of clematis is blooming. There are torenia seedlings. Surviving hyacinth beans are blossoming. The first morning glory is pale blue with dark-blue rays or spokes. Zinnias and cosmos are appearing, but they're puny in size. Cherokee Purple is setting tomatoes. There's a squash blossom atop the compost. Paler blue delphiniums are here, as are two-tone blue bachelor buttons. It's easy to tell which households are watering when they shouldn't and which ones have applied fertilizer that's high in nitrogen. Loquat fruits are few but gigantic; the creatures can't keep up with them. When passers-by attempt to pick the firewheels they succeed only in uprooting the plants.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

New appearances

Early Girl and Sweet 100 tomato plants are setting fruit. They're in pots, which seems to suit them fine and keeps many a pest away. All plants are blooming. Today brought the first four o'clock flowers and the first Turk's cap flowers. We hear warblers but we haven't seen any yet.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Everything new

We have a fancy two-tone California poppy, just one. There's an entirely new batch of sweet peas, very aromatic and entirely Canada Mints wintergreen pink. Blue bachelor's buttons are giving a show. The very first four o'clock of the season is in bloom. The rosebush that's growing from its true roots is covered in velvety dark red bloos with strong golden centers. Every day brings a new variety of nasturtium. Today's poppy surprise was red with a white picotee edge. An old amaryllis in a pot has a bud-stalk showing. Milkweed is consumed almost entirely: pods, flowers, and even sturdy old stalks. Oak flowers are falling like rain. Loquats, though somewhat scant, are as big as pears this year.