Christmas colors are everywhere in July. Wouldn’t these make lovely Christmas decorations? I haven’t identified the caterpillar yet but I think the beetle is a green stink bug.
Fawns and osprey chicks are both covered with spots! Here’s our osprey chick, Red Eye. Although you can’t see the color of her eyes in this picture, you do get a pretty good view of the spots all over her wings.
This out of focus photo shows from left to right, baby Red Eye, dad Dart and mom Pepper Dotty. We believe Red Eye hatched 5/14 and should have fledged a few days ago, inspiring the following:
An only child So always under Parents’ watchful eye
She eats and naps And eats again And barely moves a thigh.
Have you ever heard Of a baby bird Who got too fat to fly?
The following photo, taken 7/10, shows Red Eye finally doing wing exercises. If your wings were that long, imagine how heavy they must be! It would probably take you awhile to start flying exercises too!
We wandered through the amazingly lovely Kenilworth Gardens in DC to see ponds full of 7′ tall lotuses in full bloom. July 4 is the height of their annual water lotus and water lily display. Gates open at 8:30 AM. Best to be there early!
Then we stopped at Panda Gourmet for lunch and discovered this carving. We probably would have considered the blossom and leaf an exaggeration, an artist’s fantasy, if we hadn’t just been surrounded by similar giant water lotuses!
FYI: What is the difference between a water lily and a water lotus?
Mullein or Lumberjack’s toilet paper usually grows straight and tall, often in the shape of a candelabra lit with lovely yellow blossoms. For some unknown reason this group of plants followed a remarkably snake-like direction instead. I wonder if they will grow the same way in the same location next year. FYI, the toilet paper reference is to the broad, soft, velvety leaves the plant thoughtfully provides for the traveler or passing lumberjack in need. The leaves were also cut into rectangles and used as blankets in dollhouses. If you find the lovely whorls of early stage plants toward Christmas, save some of the small leaves, dry them and tie them together in bunches with ribbon to decorate your tree.
Mockingbird fledgling may be out of focus but it is out in the world, clinging to an apple tree branch! Since John caught this photo 6/18 we have seen it, or one or more of it’s nest mates, hopping around on our deck, getting fed by their always diligent parents and, within a few days of leaving the nest, actually flying all the way from the deck to the dawn redwood!
Silhouettes in the shade at the edge of the water.