08/19/2022

I tried cantaloupe in my oatmeal this morning, hoping it would be magical like peaches, but I think they’re best eaten cold and alone. The melon, not the person doing the eating.
Gram is too tall to stretch under this chair.
He came out from under the chair to stretch, then went back under the chair to continue observing his Doggie.
Two new blooms on the two leaf senna!!
I think one of the juniperleaf cuttings had some nearly ripe seeds on it and they sprouted!!! I kept them in standing water in the shade for the first few days as a cutting, then moved them to a dry spot but still in the shade, where they are now. Still watering every day. This is additionally interesting because the seeds I collected from the original juniperleaf in the winter have not sprouted anywhere I put them. I was reading today in Nokes’ germination book that sometimes fresher seeds don’t have such an impermeable seed coat.
A few little grasses in the backyard where I sprinkled the native grass mix from Plants of the Southwest! The mix was blue grama and buffalograss.

08/16/2022 developments of interest

Tuesday started off sleepy before work.
On my way out I saw the two leaf senna blooming for the first time! I’m so happy it’s doing ok. There is a second plant too but it has no buds yet.
The Chef and Briar picked me up from work. When we came back, we discovered Gram waiting.
He was waiting for his Doggie. “Hello Big Sister!”. Once she came back in the house all was well again.
Fajita salad by Paula and The Chef. I am informed there were garden onions and at least one garden tomato involved.
The first cushaw squash just keeps growing. We think it is almost ready as the rind is getting pretty hard now.
The purple beauty peppers are inexplicably red. I wonder if it’s too hot for the purple color.
The mystery pumpkin vine made a second bit of Halloween. It’s the slightly more yellow one above. The vine itself seemed to be dying of squash vine borers so we went ahead and removed it.

07/22/2022 our first and only apple

We looked at the William’s pride apple tree today and the apple was missing!! Concern. We found it on the ground.
Sadly, the bottom half was rotted. I forgot that William’s pride is an early variety, so we should have picked sooner before it fell.
However, we cut off the bad part and the rest was quite delicious! A nice texture and magnificent smell!!
Gram was less impressed than we were.

Supervisory bonding time

Wednesday around 4pm, Gram began snuggling the back of the dog.
She’s had an undignified two weeks in an inflatable cone to keep her from bothering incisions for benign sebaceous cyst removal. So, she’ll be fine, we just have to make it ’til stitch removal.
I think she’s learning the rule: you do not disturb the cat.
Gram moved to a much cozier cat-sized spot.
By 6pm on Thursday he made himself at home. Two hours is a new record for them! He hasn’t been snuggly since last winter.
Thursday we discovered him snuggling his big sister again.
Friday: “oh hey it’s Big Sister…”
Go for it!
Happy siblings. I hope this becomes regular. They’ve always played a lot but both have been a bit jumpy around snuggles before.
I accidentally interrupted it by taking the dog outside, but I brought her back in with a sun-warmed tail and that was quite acceptable.

06/23/2022

The second Coryphantha sulcata seedling seems to have died, but the original is getting longer.
Another two spotted bumblebee (Bombus bimaculatus) visited the mealy blue sage today!
There was only one but I took a lot of angles. You can see the two spots if you zoom in.
In flight you get the best view of spots.
I liked the pollinating wasp zooming through in this picture.
Baby mantis!
I believe this is a baby red yucca, as that’s what I planted here, and it seems too sturdy to be grass.
A big ol mydas fly in the backyard!!
The native clematis likes its new sunnier spot about 20 ft to the west. It already has two or three new leaves!
I weeded the strawberry/honey berry bed but got called in for dinner when there was still a patch left. Maybe tomorrow.
I found a second pale zig zaggy spider in the backyard. Looking at it closer, I think it’s the wrong pattern and shape for Argiope aurantica, the usual banana spider.
Filling up the bird bath intrigued the dog.
African blue basil has flowers!
One of the many marigolds in the raised beds (we mixed the old seedheads and plants in over the winter) is beginning to flower!
The corn is going to town! A vaquero bean is flowering!
A fine little bell pepper!!
Cooling off after gardening with the mysterious Paper Protozoan. Note the hairy flagellum sticking out.

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.

06/17/2022

I had always assumed this plant, Dichondra, was introduced but apparently it’s not! The taxonomy is confusing but it’s at least probable that this is a native species.
That’s great because it was hard to get rid of haha.
Belly rub plz
Gram is so long but he still loves to sleep on this scratcher box.
Abby was right, this is Monarda fistulosa! It finally bloomed. I put these seeds out either in 2019 or 2020.
Rainbow garden continues to do mediocre on yellow and orange. But the others are fantastic!
I like that this plant hopper has a big spot on its underside.

06/11/2022

The Chef made no bake lemon curd/ cheesecake layered parfaits with homemade whipped cream, farm share blueberries, and homemade granola for a garden tour.
Prepared the night before in the fridge.
Perfect for the tropically humid day.
A wasp carrying a caterpillar
Spittlebug
Hello Tuqu
This young man.
Two Texas dandelions from home! White specks are elderberry petals.
Bee fly
Possibly a baby Grindelia leaf??
A second Coryphantha sulcata seedling came up!!!!!
Lace bug (Tineidae) on giant ragweed leaf.
Nobody home…
…except for this crab spider!
My keeled treehoppers have a big family!!
Soooo manyyyyyy
Shackleton and Briar disagree about social distancing.
A nice jumping spider.
It’s on a houseplant that is outside for the summer.

05/29/2022

Hard work entertaining and supervising the additional kitties!!
A very tiny buprestid beetle I haven’t seen before on Maximilian sunflower leaves.
Close up, a little blurry. It was windy.
No idea why she put her face in the dayflowers.
Very tiny bee on elderberry flowers.
Shackleton got a leash walk and likes my untidy and dusty staging ground for pots.