20 August 2009

Too much beauty

There's just too much beauty in the garden, I simply must share...

Syriphid Fly eating the nectar of a Calendula Flower.

Northern Leopard Frog, Rana Pipiens, this wet and soggy summer has been great for the frogs, never seen so many frogs and toads in the garden. Even found a young Wood Frog in the Zucchini. Plenty of bugs and slugs for them to eat this year.

Syriphid Fly tasting a Red Clover blossom. It's a great year for these Syriphid Flies too, there's dozens in the garden, the larva are predatious, often of aphids and other small soft bodied insects, but the adults are pure nectar eaters. And red clover is one sweet source of nectar. I use it as a natural sweetener in herbal teas.

Unidentified big green caterpillar.

Grass Skipper resting on the Betony blossoms.

Ichneumon wasp tasting the Carrot flower nectar, an important parasitoid in the gallery of natural enemies in the garden.

Marigold bloom.

Skullcap flower spikes. A hardy perennial herb useful to support a good night's sleep, and also a graceful flower in the garden landscape.

Grasshopper in the alfalfa. I've let my alfalfa bushes go to seed, after harvesting an early cut of leaves for herbal teas. The seeds for sprouting will be a great store of live food on our Winter menu. I just love the complement of colors in this image, the lavenders on the grasshopper highlighted by the alfalfa blossoms, the picture is a pallette of pastels.

The mullein flower stalks do not fail to attract the highest concentration of bumble bees, day after day. And the bees sure are stocking up on pollen from this prolific bloomer. Not only do they fill their leg pouches with rich golden pollen, but their fuzzy bums get covered in the stuff. Pollination in action.

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