Forgotten, but not gone

October 2, 2014

I’d completely forgotten I had this blog!  However, since I’m slowly and painfully learning the ins and outs of WordPress blogs by putting together a separate one as a website for a different purpose, I suppose it would be a good idea to cast off the shackles of laziness and try to start posting here again.  Facebook is just so much easier.  However, this place lets me find my posts fast.  Plus I have a camera now, and so can stick photos up here for archival purposes.  Let’s see:  news on the nature front: the first two Youth Birding programs went well – no kids on the first one, 1 kid on the second, but good weather and nice birds (and spiders!) both times.  I shall have to append some photos when I get the chance.  One spider in particular is a very snazzy orbweaver that I haven’t seen anywhere else but around Loch Raven.  When I look up the name I shall include that with the photo.  My goldenrods actually thrived this year after last year’s difficult establishment – the graminifolia in front was huge, and attracted a very good diversity of wasps – two different kinds of thread-waisted (Potter and Organ-pipe?), a couple of different Polistes paper wasps, at least 4 kinds of Pompilid spider wasps, including the big, pretty mahogany-barred species I don’t know the name of, and a couple of types of Vespid paper wasps along with the usual dribs and drabs of miscellaneous hymenopterans and syrphid flies.  No spider or bug predators (yet), but a big, crafty mantis was hunting in the ‘underbrush’ one time – hard to see in the green shadows under the flower sprays…

In the back, the rugosa unfortunately got cut back just before the earliest sprays were set to open, but we still had a decent (if late) flowering season; On the good side, it turns out that my rugosa pot also contained what I think is canadensis roots, so I had a big, fragrant popular addition to the patch.  I have to put up supports for next year, though – everything flopped over the patio when it rained.  There were several spiders hunting the area, but all I saw were web-based, not ambush or jumping spiders – some Theridiids and a couple of agelenid types.  The dogbane struggled – one of the two flowered out twice, but the other (which never was that strong) gave up the plant ghost by June.  It was a very dry year, so maybe next year will be better; more mulch and periodic watering might help.  On the other side, the asparagus patch looked very good.  This was the second year, so soon it will be eatable.

That should do for the moment.  With luck I may update this more frequently down the road.