In honor of Binky, my best friend, today is all about the letter B.
Birds. The usual customers are bellied up at the sunflower bar. Tufted titmouses – (titmice?), chickadees, cardinals, wrens, blue jays, doves and bluebirds. I love the way the bluebirds perch up on the shepherd’s crooks, swoop down to grab a cricket or a worm, and then pop right back up to perch on the metal hook again. This morning there were three of them just working the yard over. No sandhill cranes this morning, but I did put fresh water in their drinking bowl for when they show up.
Birdfeeders. Two are empty and two are getting there. The food lasts much longer now that I’ve put the feeders close to the screened-in porch. The squirrels are staying away more. Not completely, but at least the feeders aren’t getting emptied in a day like they were when they were farther out in the yard.
Bees. And lots of other little flying creatures. Wasps, skippers – which I think are actually butterflies. And dragonflies. The helicopter of the flying insect world.
Black snake. A gorgeous specimen about as thick as my index finger was cruising through the azalea bushes just outside the porch, hunting for slow lizards I imagine. At one point he stretched himself out on a sunny branch and just flexed for me, showing off like he was a body builder at Venice Beach. After an appropriate amount of admiration, he went on his way, sliding silently through the sunny leaves.
Butterflies. I have a bed of milkweed that has self-seeded and I’m just letting it have its way there. There were all colors of butterflies checking them out this morning – orange, brown, yellow, white, and one with flashes of blue that I think was a swallowtail, but I didn’t want to disturb it by getting too close.
Bunnies. We have a family that has moved into our azalea bush. It’s really more of a condo than a bush. There are at least three cardinal nests in there. I like to think that the bunnies finally saved up enough money to move into a place where each of their kids could have their own room. I put terra cotta saucers out with water, so now they can brag to the other bunny families that they have a water view.
Blooms. The pink crepe myrtles are finally blooming. They are much later than the other myrtles in the yard. Maybe they are creeping myrtles instead. The pentas are a nice, deep red that show up beautifully against the bright green of the grass. Plumbago and salvias are also doing well, and I’m glad to say that the fire spikes in the front bed have finally started showing their color. It’s taken them awhile to decide to bloom. The geraniums I bought for 25 cents on the clearance rack at Walmart are blooming in the front flower pot. I had no idea what color they’d be, or even if they were all the same. There’s something inside me that cannot resist a 25 cent mystery plant. It’s not a problem, though. I can quit whenever I want. Honest.
Bad dogs. I was noticing a terrible smell of poo this morning. It seemed to occur whenever Gracie was near me. She must have found some delicious poop to roll in while we were out walking in the yard. She got a thorough scrubbing with Dawn before she was allowed back in the house. Dawn doesn’t just cut the grease, it removes the poo as well. I don’t know why they don’t use that as a tag line.
Blowsy cat tails. Ok, I’m stretching the ‘b’ thing with this one, but I do love the pink cat tails of the fountain grass. I think of it as my hello kitty grass. The bed is big enough so that if mama deer has to leave any more babies in our yard we have room for triplets. (Last fall one deer mama left a baby beside the cherry tree in the early am while she went shopping for groceries. Around lunchtime she returned, picked up her kid, and they trotted back off to the woods. We’re deer daycare.) I like to think the deer will trot by, see the bed of fountain grass, and make a mental note that it looks like a safe place for babies to nap.
Brew. Ron made the coffee this morning. There is something so nice about coming inside after our morning constitutional to find the house smelling of coffee already brewing. I enjoyed a large cup of it outside in the shade, and wished I had my buddy Binky to shoot the bull with. I guess this blog will have to do.