June 12, 2009

After weeks of rain, my yard is growing--sometimes too much in places. There are many insects for the birds, but we also have found some ticks on the dogs and ourselves. So far the temperature has been perfect!

office bluebird

This bluebird keeps coming back to the burning bush outside my office window. I took this shot through the glass

baby catbirds

Baby catbirds that hatched in the cedar bush off the front porch.

mother catbird

Mother catbird finds bugs in the gutter.

baby martins1

Baby Purple Martins in one of the 12 apartments.

hungry baby martins

This little one heard me open the door. I check the houses every three days to make sure house sparrows have not started to build nests. The sparrows are very destructive and will peck the Martin eggs and kill the babies.

baby martins2

This one is newly hatched.

looking down at raised beds

My four raised gardens from above.

looking down at large garden

The bigger garden took a long time to plant. The rains washed away seeds and digging was difficult. Now, the mulch and path fabric help the plants to stay put and grow.

overgrown beds in front of house

The small bed off the front porch is out of control. I planted lavender, hollyhocks and various butterfly bushes last year and this spring they have quadrupled in size.

vines on dog fence

My goal was to create shade and wind blocks for the dog runs. Now the vines and bushes are maturing and I will have to prune some back. The birds love it, however.

small pond after rains

My small pond is once again a haven for frogs, lizards, birds and crawdads, at least.

martin parent

A parent Purple Martin likes to sit outside my office door on a bamboo pole I pushed into the dirt. He or she sings then flies off to find bugs, then comes back to sing. The noise is a unique twitter and is one of my favorite bird songs.

topsy turvey

I had saved some Topsy Turvy planters since I tried them about 8 years ago. They were too heavy for a small hook. I tried it again this year and hung this one over a cross beam. It's not very attractive but the plant seems happy so far.


Below: a variety of spring plants in the yard.


orange flowers


sweet potato vine