Our Autumn Cabbage Garden

Being finished with the main chores in the front room, I can pay more attention to my garden again. Wow, I neglected it for several weeks. The garden beds need a lot of work, before they will look nice and healthy again.  Yesterday, I’ve got one of the beds ready: I pulled the leftover plants and the weeds out, loosened the soil, and mixed more soil and amendment in. Today I added two more bags of soil, before I started planting and sowing. Now, one of the beds looks pretty again. I planted broccoli, white & red cabbages, and cauliflower. And in the space between the vegetables I have sown carrots, radishes, rutabagas, and turnips. They are all yummy Winter goodies. Since I have the chicken wire around the garden beds, the rabbits can not get to them. I hope, the Cabbage White Butterfly doesn’t come around to lay its eggs at this time of the year. That would be a bummer.

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Broccoli, White & Red Cabbages, and Cauliflower are planted; Carrots, Radishes, Rutabagas, and Turnips are sown.

The Calamondin Orange Tree

Calamondin is a hybrid (citrofortunella) between a mandarin orange and a kumquat. Calamondin oranges are edible, but the tree is rather used as an ornamental.

Two years ago, Kevin got me a Meyer lemon tree for Valentine’s Day. Last Spring, I added another small Calamondin  orange tree to my citrus tree collection. It had some fruit hanging from its tree, when I purchased it. When they were ripe, we used them to flavor our ice water.

Since my little tree sat there and looked a little bit intimidated by the bigger cousin, the Meyer lemon tree, I decided to transfer it into a bigger pot and fertilized it. It started to bloom again. And the fragrance of those blossoms are so mesmerizing. It smells so good, so does its fruit.

More Black Swallowtail Caterpillars

After all the Black Swallowtail caterpillars became lunch for the bird babies last Spring, we finally get more caterpillars in our garden this Autumn. This time the caterpillars seem to hide better in the thick leaves of our parsley. Yesterday, another Black Swallowtail butterfly laid more eggs on the parsley. The chances are good, we have more caterpillars hatching soon.

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We have more Black Swallowtail caterpillars in our garden.

Hummingbirds In My Garden

It is that time of year, when the hummingbirds migrate from Canada to Central America, where they will stay to spend the Winter. When I water my garden, I hear them chirping all the time.

Over the last several years, I have seen hummingbirds visiting my garden to energize and get ready for the long flight along the Gulf of Mexico. I usually put a couple of feeders up, and I have flowering shrubs, they like to feed on. Last year, I created a little hummingbird garden next to my greenhouse, which included a firebush, bougainvillea, lantana, and some salvia (garden sages). I also added a water fountain for quenching the hummers’ thirsts and taking a bath to cool off in this North Texas heat. My reward was that the couple visited with their offspring. Three young hummingbirds and their parents chased one another, having a drink of nectar from the trumpet vine blossoms, and then chase each other again.

I would love to find a hummingbird nest one day. Maybe someday Momma Hummingbird decides to build her nest in my yard. That would be so awesome!!!

A Visit From The Hummingbird

Kevin mowed the yard, this morning. In the meantime, a few Great-tailed Grackles and a Blue Jay sat under the tree. They watched Kevin and the lawn mower very carefully. Every time he came close to them, they hopped away. When he turned around to mow a different section, they hopped back to their spot under the shading tree. Kevin was amused by watching these birds. He said, they hopped synchronized back and forth on the lawn. The main reason for this hopping around was the food in the bird feeder. Once Kevin was done with mowing the lawn, the birds were all over the bird food. Some House Sparrows and some Northern Cardinals came over for brunch, too.

This commotion caught the interest of the little hummingbird, which resides in the neighbor’s tree. It observed the other birds eating some seeds, looked a little bit further and saw these beautiful hyacinth bean blossoms. Zooom! It’s brunch time for the hummingbird!

Sandy & The Bird Feeder

Earlier today, I saw Sandy having some critter food from the plate I sat out for her and her squirrel friends. A few minutes later, Sara looked outside the patio door window, and yelled: “OMG, MOM! YOU HAVE TO SEE THIS! IT LOOKS HILARIOUS!” I had to see it for myself. While Sandy tried to get a piece of corn, she tangled from the bird feeder. Not sure, if she was stuck, I walked outside and approached her slowly. Mrs. Rabbit saw me, and ran toward her rabbit escape hole in the fence. Sandy got startled, made a big leap from the feeder to the ground and climbed on top of the fence. There she felt saver and ate her trophy: a piece of corn, before she balanced along the fence top to jump into the neighbor’s tree.