Thursday, September 29, 2016

Caterpillars in the Garden

This is the milkweed plant called "Hairy Balls".
I'm pretty sure you can guess why.
And you'd be right to guess that I bought these for the Monarch Waystation
simply because they're called "Hairy Balls".
What can I say? 
I have the humor of a 12 year old boy.
The "balls" are the seed pods and form in late summer/early fall.
They're perennial only in Zone 8 and above, so just an annual here
but you can save the seeds for the following season.
Sadly, I haven't noticed any Monarch caterpillars on the milkweed, 
though I've seen some actual butterflies stopping for nectar.
I do have Eastern Black Swallowtail caterpillars.
I planted bronze fennel just for them (their favorite food).
While I've been mainly concerned with helping the Monarch population, 
I also want to help butterflies in general because really, 
the world can't have too many butterflies.
In other news, 
I've nearly finished weeding the jungle garden.
With all the hot weather and lack of rain, 
I let the garden go way longer than I should have.  
I'm 3/4 of the way finished cleaning it up.  
And Big E cut down the last of the shrubs we needed to remove.
We still have some stumps to dig out, 
and a large pile of brush to haul to the mulch plant
but it's all coming along.
And once I clean the kitchen, 
I'll share pictures of the new floor.