One of my favorite things in life is a monarch butterfly.
They are magical to me, as are all butterflies really. And their survival is in jeopardy which makes them feel even more precious to me.
They can be hard to capture with my camera because they are always on the move, like most butterflies. So it was a joy to chase one in my garden this week and to photograph it while it explored the new coneflowers I added to my garden last summer. Note to self: plant more coneflowers!
A patch of milkweed appeared near my mailbox a couple years ago and it keeps getting bigger and bigger each year. It’s not the ideal spot but I’m afraid if I move it when it first comes up in spring, it might not be a successful move and then I won’t have any milkweed. So I’m just going to appreciate it no matter where it decides to flourish.
It’s always a treasure hunt to find a monarch caterpillar on the milkweed. And how amazing to realize that yellow, black and white striped caterpillar turns into a beautiful orange, black and white monarch!
It’s magic and magical! And it brings me great joy!
It’s nice to see some wildlife still hanging around as the weather grows colder and colder each day. I’ve been working on setting more habitat features, including nuts, birdseeds, water and nesting houses.
Of course, the squirrels are always around, gorging on everyone else’s food.
But they are entertaining to watch and still make me smile.
I don’t see bunnies too often throughout the day in my backyard, since they are more active at dawn and dusk. I’m not sure if this bunny saw me sitting at the patio table right next to him/her, or if he just didn’t care I was there. It was great to witness him eating a weed! If only they would eat more weeds and less plants I actually paid for, like the tulips starting to come up in spring and the coneflowers I’m trying to get to spread throughout the flower gardens.
There is a warm glow outside on this mid-September day.
After a walk around the block for a lunch time break, I paused to notice the wildlife in my backyard. I saw Chippy climbing around the wood pile and arbor vitae trees, the cardinal family, the chickadee gang and a woodpecker competing for time at the bird feeder.
It was a nice distraction from the demands of the day and a comforting moment of peace.
Hope you are having a good hump day and finding ways to take care of yourself!
We don’t have much blooming in our gardens these late summer days. But things are still green and thriving around here, with steady sunshine and summer rain storms.
beetles ALL over the butterfly weed seed pods!
rain gauge – day 1
rain gauge – day 2
We still have some coneflowers, black-eyed susans, phlox, roses and our dwarf hydrangea trees blooming. I would like to pick up some asters and mums from the garden center to fill in the bare spots left behind from summer perennials that are done for the season.
In the meantime, it’s fun to walk around the yard and look for treasures, which are always great inspiration for my sketchbook. New illustrations are always in the works!