12/2022 backlog of infrastructure and little babies

Yesterday, 12/31, I finally glued on the rain barrel cap holders that the Chef 3D printed for me! I used epoxy after cleaning both surfaces with ethanol.
Paula got solar powered outdoor lights for Christmas and has used them to make the path to the compost visible! Edit: thanks to Mom for inquiring if we can turn the lights out. Yes we can! It’s important not to pollute the dark with more light than we use at any given moment.
I am hoping these tiny seedlings are the annual bluets that sometimes grow in this part of the yard. Keeping an eye on them.
A tinier potential annual bluet seedling next to the comparatively large wild geraniums. These two pictures were 12/31/2022.
12/28/2022, the Ratibida columnifera rosettes survived the big cold!
Two Verbena halei rosettes also exist and made it!
Finally, and very thrilling, two potential Penstemon oklahomensis seedlings! They don’t appear to be hairy leaves like some other common seedling volunteers. Stay tuned.
Shackleton enjoyed a leashed walk in the same excellent 12/28 weather.
Jeanne kindly sent us some Salaginella riddellii- Riddell’s Spike-Moss. We put the biggest chunk in the rainbow garden (in green of course) on 12/25.
We put a smaller piece of the spike moss in the cactus planter.
12/25 was so nice we also moved some volunteers. This is the big root of a poke berry! We moved those along the back fence where another pokeberry lives. We also moved several ampelopsis from random spots in the yard to along the south fence trellis.
A blackjack oak acorn with a sprout on it! We planted this exciting find (12/24) into a pot on 12/25. Fingers crossed for a spring sprout.
Judy gave us an adorable toad house! I have placed it near the veggie beds. Please come eat our earwigs, toad friends.
12/24 checking the pot containing Sedum nutallii from Jeanne. The sedums seem to have made it along with Verbena rosettes (V. Halei??) and other intriguing volunteers.
Going somewhere! Wow!! Happy briar in the car.
On 12/24 we visited the lake at Lexington WMA. This seasonal creek was frozen solid! The lake was too. Briar wears her hunter orange.
After the deep freeze, only the top tips of the recently transplanted rosemary got frozen. They were pressed down by the sheets. But the sheets protected the rest of the plant!

12/10/2022 finally turning

The greens are doing well.
Seedlings are in the raised bed but I’m not sure what they are. Hoping for field violets?
The apple trees still are mostly green but one pear tree is turning. The three pictures below of leaves turning yellow and orange are from the one pear tree in front.
Later we walked the dog at Saxon park. Lots of rabbit’s tobacco sprouting.

11/12/2022 frosty

Marigolds are done. Photo by Paula.
Winecup rosettes are fine for the winter! Photo also by Paula.
We went to look at Saxon park.
It was fun.
Then we went home. Having dog thoughts in the backyard.
Catctus
Tom kha (Thai coconut chicken soup). Has garden lemongrass in it. Lemongrass is not frost hardy so Paula divided the stems to keep a few indoors over the winter, and froze a bunch of stems to use.

10/08/2022 Ruby Grant park

Caterpillar on broom weed
A grasshopper with very worn wings on Grindelia.
A tree cricket on Grindelia!
A megachilid bee on Grindelia.
Fall is starting! Sumacs in particular are turning red.
A noctuid moth on Maximilian sunflowers.
A bumblebee (Bombus impatiens) nearby on the same sunflower plant.
So many Maximilian sunflowers!
Briar poses in front of the prairie filled with more sunflowers.
A purple aster!
On the first Liatris we saw, Paula found these purple caterpillars.
Mom mentioned Schinia sanguinea at home recently and we think that’s what these are. She saw the adult first then later the caterpillars. Two other Schinia sp can apparently also eat Liatris according to this website (and of course they don’t provide a citation). However the owlet moth caterpillar book, which Mom has, doesn’t mention this.
A sleepy Dainty Sulphur. It was a cloudy and cool day afternoon before sunset.
A parasitic wasp resting on snow-on-the-mountain.
Another interesting moth on Maximilian sunflowers.
Green grasshoppers were distracted so I got a close up of their textured greens!
The prairie is full of messages. Briar sniffs sunflowers as we walk by.
A long-horned bee rests on a Grindelia. There were so many Grindelia at all stages.
A very fuzzy Croton species.

10/09/2022 Saxon park

Schinia gaurae moth (the clouded crimson) caterpillar on false gaura! We counted nine around our 1.75 mi loop.
The tall rosettes of the false gaura were nice to see since they look just like my garden one.
A Schinia moth I haven’t identified feeding on aster flowers.
This bumblebee loved the Salvia azurea.
Back of two spotted bumblebee where you can see the spots!
Funnel web spider says no pictures, please.
A tree cricket hiding on Liatris.
The seed pod of a Baptisia. Mom said possibly B. australis var. minor
Paula found two big beautiful lynx spider mommas! Wow! This is one guarding its egg sac.
A tiny caterpillar on false gaura.
The first Solomon’s seal I’ve seen in the wild! We have several in the yard but no idea if they’re volunteers or planted.
Probably a buckwheat, the botany consulting committee says.
Abby, Mom, and Jeanne also agreed this was probably a dwarf lead plant.
Paula found a magnificent sumac leaf turning yellow to red.
The Sumac is really turning beautiful reds all over!

08/14/2022 Ruby Grant park morning

Our first Salvia azurea of the season blooming!
The first of many Helianthus annuus this morning.
A lone Maximilian sunflower starting to bloom. The rest don’t even have buds.
Snow on the mountain was magnificent today!
We went on a new part of the trail today and encountered some highly concerning Art.
“It has a lot of eyes Mom”
The little mosaic seats are also suspect.
“Why do you humans keep doing things to me”
“Ok I guess it’s ok”
We also came to terms with the big Art.
Possibly Amorpha, false-indigo.
Soapberry! Thanks Abby for the identification.
Another H. Annuus.
A beautiful Grindelia bud.
More sunflower (H annuus)
A differential grasshopper snacking on the sunflower.
We found a magnificent patch of silver leaf nightshade!
We had Briar pose among the silver leaf nightshades.
Possibly a Physalis?
Maybe non-blooming camphorweed?
Possibly Asclepias verticillata (thanks Mom!)
An aster starting to bloom!
Unknown flower that hasn’t bloomed yet.
Possibly Cardiospermum, balloon vine? From reading, it seems to be native but disliked for clogging farm equipment.
The balloon vine flower.
Ruby Grant park considerately has a dog level water fountain at the parking lot!

08/13/2022 walking around

A mystery yellow composite flower along the sidewalk. Update: Mom and Abby have identified as camphorweed, probably Heterotheca subaxillaris. Camphorweeds are native.
Leaves and stem of the yellow flowered plant.
This picture is from yesterday (08/12/2022) but there are lots of Grindelia getting ready to bloom near the railroad tracks. A few had opened up by today.
I was also pleased to find 2-3 Scarlet Pea plants along the sidewalk near the Grindelia yesterday. They were still blooming today.
Downstream from the OU duck pond there is a somewhat hidden bridge and there was a native hibiscus blooming near it.
A few tiny annual coreopsis were in the field near the creek. Before it got mowed this spring there were a lot more and taller.
It was too hot. We gave Briar and ourselves some ice cubes upon returning.
She has taken to resting her chin on her ice cubes after getting a drink from her water bowl.

06/21/2022

Gram guards the rooting juniperleaf.
There’s a new pollinator garden on campus!!
Very pleased at least one of the partridge pea seeds I sprinkled last year made it up.
Paper wasps made a nest on the debris of the invasive clematis.
A small lynx spider eats a fly
Just noticed that the long true bugs have little flat pom poms on their antennae.
A second individual. I think you have to see them from the right angle to get a good view of the antennae spots.
Dog
A helpful cat saw this wasp (maybe a spider wasp?) In the aloe and knocked the pot over.
I took it outside and shooed the friend off. No dinner in the house for it. Only cat.
I spotted a plume moth hiding on rain barrel stand.
Potatoes in straw bale getting big. Hope roots are too.