Thursday, September 26, 2013
In his jar on the picnic table at the Library garden
Sitting on a stick, feeling the wind
He flew over and up to a nearby tree, where he hung for quite a while (until we left). You can barely see him hanging like a triangle. Find the end of the leftmost branch. Where that branch meets the leaves of the branch above it, the butterfly is hanging. He's ready to go to Mexico now!
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
**Between 5 and 5:30 PM today, if all goes well, I'll be releasing him (or her, we're not sure) into the Library garden. They like hot and sunny weather, so today is perfect. Join us if you'd like to! It's in the community garden plot that's 2 blocks south of S. 4th Street and S. Maple Ave.
Curious to know more about monarchs? Check out these links:
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Our caterpillar is on its way to becoming a butterfly! On the left you can see the chrysalis as it was for 12 days--light green with beautiful gold dots. On the right, you can see how much it has changed--see the beautiful black and orange wings peeking through? (Sorry for the sideways pictures.)
Wow! We will probably see our new butterfly tomorrow (Wednesday). We hope to release him into the garden and send him on his way to Mexico. If you'd like to be a part of that, call the Youth Desk at 239.5644 for an update on what time we'll do it.
Saturday, September 7, 2013
A very welcome sight awaited me in our library garden plot on Wednesday morning--a monarch caterpillar, munching on the milkweed plant! You may remember from our earlier posts that the milkweed grew on its own in May, then died from a mole invasion, and then grew back strong and healthy.
Our milkweed now has three fresh stalks and lots of great leaves, so it made a great home for the caterpillar! (Most other milkweed has gone to seed by now. I'm not sure how much difference it makes, other than that ours just looks fresher.)
By the time I found it, it had already munched through several leaves (as you can see from the picture). It was really large--about as long as my finger and fatter. It was munching furiously when I came and had slowed down by the time I left, so it may be making a chrysalis soon.
We have been watching our milkweed all summer to see if it would host any monarchs, since milkweed is the only plant monarchs eat and its supply is decreasing in North America. We are thrilled to play temporary host to this little creature! Watch the blog for more updates. (Here's an update!)
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
We planted them in our Fairy Tale garden, along with beanstalks for Jack and lots of flowers. We thought Cinderella would appreciate having a coach for the ball. :)
The vines grew well for a while, but there is only one pumpkin--and you can see from the picture that it is pretty small. Even these hot days can't help it catch up! In addition, the leaves are now covered with powdery mildew (click here for more info). At this point, we are considering pulling out the whole plant to keep other vegetables from getting infected. Sometimes that's the hard-knock life of gardening!
Thursday, August 22, 2013
Cucumbers (and many other vegetables like summer squash) are often tastier and more tender if they're picked when they are small. But sometimes we don't get out to the garden soon enough, and that's okay too!
We grew our cucumbers on the ground this year since we had so much room in our garden plot. Another option is to place the vines on a trellis of some sort and grow them vertically.