Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - January 2013 - Winter abundance

 Rosa 'Mutabilis', the Butterfly Rose, her fragile silken blooms hover over the well-branched specimen is a rule breaker. A true rose, she is in no way staid or formal. Instead of her blossoms fading in the sun, each petal dances through the color wheel, deepening in tone from yellow to tangerine to pink and finally- crimson.   

The plant tag promised she would grow 6-8' fall. Mine billows in the wind in complete ignorance of any restrictions of when she should stop performing. She's at least 12 ' tall and knows no season she doesn't wish to be in bloom. 

Her long abundant branches wave in the birds from the chaparral filled finger canyon that we are locked in permanent battle for supremacy of the land with.   Rested, it is a short flight for visiting birds from the protection of her arms to the main bird feeders. 

The bird feeders were placed so that I can watch from both my study and the kitchen.  This Victorian was one of my husband's first woodworking projects using a scroll saw. Well-worn, particularly now that wood peckers have found our yard, this is probably the last season before it is replaced by a newer model. 

What makes this feeder a popular hang-out with our feathered friends? 

Abundance and diversity. 

This feeder was built to protect  the silo feeder, which we have filled with parfait like layers of nuts, seeds and dried fruit- this week-cranberries. 

Nearby- the bougainvillea has been trimmed and trimmed and trimmed again this year to produce a thick canopy over the thorny branches. If you look closely at the top you should spot 2 birdies waiting in line for their turn at the feeder. 

A family of 3 dove walked the grass in the opening in search of dropped safflower seeds. Skittish birds, the thicket of the bougainvillea on the edge of the lawn made then less nervous about the lens aimed at them.  

Even a bench is a welcome perch. 

Tahoe is 6 now.  A Chihuahua -  Miniature  Pinscher mutt-  she thinks like a hunting dog. Open the sliding door to the backyard and there is nothing she loves more than flushing  the birds. 

Most of the year the hummingbirds ignore the feeders- winter is a different story. 

Our chilly nighttime temperatures settled in the mid 30's last week- turning the tangerines that color which signals the salivation glands. Time to pick and peel. 

The Angel's trumpet flowers aren't that beautiful peachy color of summer- but the fact that she isn't one dead stick is proof we didn't drop below freezing temperatures for any extended length of time.    

All this abundance- this very fat hawk isn't looking to diet.  He's looking to make a decision on if lunch will be wearing feathers of fur.

 Narcissus. They are planted around the perimeter, wherever a few extra bulbs can be tucked in to. Their scent is heavenly. Except to gophers.  

Last year I was on travel when the heat wave hit. My beautiful fuchsia died. I thought. I was wrong. 

 From the vegetable garden, a tutierre was pulled out from under a deceased tomato vine. its wire feet pinched inward to fit in the pot. It will give structure to the fuchsia as it regains its stature. Tomorrow I will look at the seeds to see if a suitable vining companion might add to the entry statement- this is a house where a gardener lives.  

At the feet of the pot are the blessings of a quick run to Roger's Garden in Corona del Mar. 

Herbed goat cheese in oil- tossed with  organic edible flowers and croutons from Bristol Farms:  a  perfect salad and perfect place to end this visit. 

Linking to Carol May's Garden Bloggers Bloom Day 

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  1. WOW! Those were a lot of photos! Did you realize that you posted the tangerine pic twice?
    Very nice. I can't imagine why your hummers ignore the feeder thru the year. We are so bombarded with the little guys that the two feeders we had right next to each other weren't enough. So John purchased one gigantic one so he didn't have to refill them twice a day or so!
    Love seeing the birdies in the bougainvillea waiting for their turn at the feeder. Reminded me of planes waiting to land. :) Our hummers are no where near that polite. They fuss, fight and squabble all the time over the feeder. Many times when I am sitting out there one will chase the other away buzzing right over my head.

    Good one!
    XO Trisha

  2. Hi Trisha- Thanks for mentioning that when I moved the tangerine photo- I didn't remove the duplicate. Fixed.
    Hummingbirds prefer natural nectar when available. In winter these plants are mostly on siesta- so the hummingbirds were bombing the feeders as it was the best available nourishment. Come summer- that feeder is lonely.

  3. Your garden is so pretty and relaxing. One day...... Great photos. Love the birds. When my feeders are full it makes me smile! xo

  4. Love all the birds -- and the scroll-saw feeder. It's beautiful. If I were in charge, I'd have your hubby make another one just like it!
    Your little pooch is so cute with her little pink jacket. What a paradise for her, too!

  5. Hi Joan! Gerry is going to do just what you suggested.

    Or he'll have to pay someone who will):-

    The jacket- from Target- is the first jacket Tahoe has been happy to wear.

  6. I love Mutabilis -- have you seen the massive planting of it at the Huntington? Once I saw that, I realized it would never fit in my little garden. So glad your fuchsia is alive.

  7. Sue- The garden is relaxing as soon as I sit down):- Thank you for the kind words- Love your bigger, wilder garden,too.

    Nikki- I am way overdue for a trip to the Huntington. Will look for their mutabilis. First time I spotted her was at the old Mary Lou Heards nursery.

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  9. Such a beautiful garden. Lovely to see such "life" during this dreary winter. Beautiful love them!

  10. Such a rich and beautiful post! I love seeing all the delightful Birds getting nourishment from your loving hands....Everything looks so very beautiful, Lydia...!
    A Pue Delight, My Dear!

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  13. Beautiful photos! So many birds, sweet pup and all those've brightened my night!
    Hope you've had a wonderful weekend.


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