Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Busy in the Garden

Hi Everyone!  I apologize for being missing in action lately.  I can be found in my back yard, tilling, raking, digging...the typical tasks of beginning a new flower bed. Actually, I have plans for a few flower beds, if my crabby old knees and back hold up.  I don't do much gardening during the summer because our southern heat and humidity are unbearable at times.  

The weather has been so nice for a few days...sunshine with intermittent clouds, in the 70's mostly.  I love it!  Thought I'd share photos of the Gerbera daisies that I recently purchased...aren't they lovely?  

I hope you are all enjoying the week thus far and that Spring has brought you its warmth and beauty! 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Pine Siskins

These are my final shots of the Pine Siskins this year (I think).  Most are gone, but a few of them remain.  I believe I would've had more goldfinches this year if the siskins hadn't been so numerous. They literally took over the feeders and were quite noisy and aggressive.  

Enjoying a drink while trying to maintain their balance...

Fighting over their spot at the finch socks (they love thistle!)-
sometimes they get pretty ferocious for their wee size!

In the shot below, the siskin closest to the finch sock grasped the wing 
of the smaller one and pulled it away- they both fell close to the ground.

In this next shot, a siskin is being brutally trampled by another.  

Whatever it takes to defend their food source, some of them will do it...

However, they're not all bullies- some are quite sweet and peaceful...

Enjoy your Wednesday, thank you for visiting!

Linked with Stewart at Wild Bird Wednesday

Monday, March 23, 2015

Cardinal Love

When a spot of red suddenly appears in a tree at the forest edge or on the ground beneath the bird feeders, it is almost certainly a Cardinal.  I'm always delighted to see these beauties in my back yard.  
Did you know that Northern Cardinals are so well loved in the U.S. that they're the official bird of no fewer than seven states?   It's no wonder- they're stunning in their vibrant red plumage and black face mask.  I adore them...

Wishing everyone a great week ahead!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Happy 1st Day of Spring!

Spring has finally arrived!  Many of the trees have erupted in bright shades of pink, purple and white. Suddenly the butterflies, bumble bees and dragonflies are touring my back yard, their wings dancing in the sunlight.  It seemed as though the season's magic occurred overnight- suddenly it's Spring!

I'm filled with excitement and anticipation.  Plans are underway for a flower garden and a start to our back yard woodland garden. The hummingbirds will be arriving soon, exhausted from their long journey across the Mississippi gulf, so I'll hang out feeders filled with sweet sugar water to help them replenish their energy.  Our entire yard is scattered with pine straw and autumn's leaves so it's time to bring out the rakes.  There's much to do, but I'm ready!  

I hope your first day of Spring has been a good one!  May you all have a wonderful weekend :)

(Photos from our Cleveland Pear tree in bloom, March 2015)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Forecast: Spring!

“Is the spring coming?" he said. "What is it like?"...
"It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine...” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

Ahhh, Spring is well on her way, drawing closer every day.
The blossoms of the Cleveland Pear tree have awakened right on schedule.

The Mountain Snow Pieris blooms are practicing their bows for her arrival.

Our blueberry blooms are anticipating the warmth of Spring...

The birds have commenced their spring celebration with songs and courtship.  Some are already preparing their nests.  Pretty flowers are resting in pots on my deck, waiting for their place in my new flower garden.  Bags of soil and compost are stacked in a corner of my back yard.  I can hardly wait to get started!  I'm ready to play in the dirt ;)

I hope the signs of the Spring season come soon for those of you in the north and northeast who've had a harsh winter.  The winter storms have been relentless for you this year and I know you must be ready for some sunshine and warmth.  May the season of renewal pour her blessings upon you!

I wish you all a good beginning to this week...

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Carolina Wrens Preparing Their Nest

It was interesting to observe these Carolina Wrens gather nesting materials.
They made several trips back and forth from the brush pile to the bird house.

It seems odd, however, that they brought materials to 
each of the three birdhouses in the set.  

As early as January, a pair of  Eastern Bluebirds were checking out the birdhouses, 
but I haven't seen them since.  If you look closely, you can see the male bluebird
inspecting the entrance to one of them...

I have a bluebird house, but I've yet to put it up.  That is now at the top of 
my to-do list, that is, when the ground dries more.  We've had rain nearly
every day this month thus far.

I'm looking forward to watching the wrens with their soon-to-come offspring.
Hopefully, I'll have the opportunity to capture a few good shots of them.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.  I want those of you who regularly visit 
and comment on my blog to know that I really appreciate you. :)

Linked up with Eileen on Saturday's Critters-
thanks for hosting this great meme, Eileen!