Sunday, June 28, 2009

Same Old, Same Old

The President of Honduras has been ousted by the military and exiled to Costa Rica. The United States has expressed "concern," which means that this is likely payback for the OAS vote inviting Cuba to return to the inter-American fold. Send a clear message to the Obama Administration that this is unacceptable. Email him here.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Garden Pictures

My pictures have been really bad lately. But J took a couple of really good pictures the other day, so I'm going to steal them for my blog. The plant to the left is Penstemon spectabilis, a California native. I picked it up at a native plant sale a couple of years ago. Like many California natives, though, it has a relatively short bloom period, coming to life at the beginning of April and blooming out by the end of May. It's already time for me to cut back the dead blooms.

J's goal in taking these pictures was to get pictures of the bugs in our garden, particularly the remarkable number of bees of all sizes and colors. As rural habitat for creatures of all kinds disappears, the suburban garden becomes ever more important to their survival. Monocropping means that bees can only obtain one kind of food at one time of year, so suburban gardens need to provide a variety of flowers as a food source. At the left is a ladybug--and yes, we think it's eating butterfly bush leaves.

And we also have three hybrid penstemon--of the same color. I didn't mean for it to be like that, but they were mislabeled at the nursery. This has become an increasingly common problem and is particularly irritating to those of us who plant in October. The plants aren't blooming, so you can't determine whether they've been properly labeled until they bloom in spring. It's not bad, just not what I had intended.