The thing about gardening is that you have a lot of visitors.
Both two and four legged.
This morning, going out to inspect my nursery pots and see how my bougainvillea cuttings are doing, I noticed that there were literally dozens of monarch butterfly caterpillars happily eating my milkweed down to pegs.
As a gardener it is at once frustrating and pleasurable. I would love some seeds from those milkweeds, but courtesy of a neighbor and friend here, I have a cage that I could put the plants inside so they would go to seed.
As one who enjoys nature, that is why I plant the milkweed. It’s there so the butterflies come to my yard. It is a rare day that I don’t see a number of those Monarchs on the wing, floating around, coming to a landing somewhere.
To paraphrase: If I build it, they will come.
Home (plate) I guess is in my backyard.
I don’t wander around aimlessly back there, there’s a purpose. Usually I’m being herded back to the back door by my boy Rack the McNab SuperDog(TM) after only a few minutes, so standing at the back door and taking one last look means I am trying to think if there is anything that needs to be cared for.
I let him back inside because I realized I needed to deal with a visitor. This Butterfly was perched, resting, on my sad little Hibiscus that so often is ravaged by Iguanas.
Yes, we have herds of those beasts running around. The Iguanas turn the neighborhood into something reminiscent of Jurassic Park, and usually result in my thinking “I hope there will be a solid cold snap this winter”.
Their muscles can’t function below 45F, and if it gets into the 30s it will kill them.
But this Butterfly seemed to be enjoying the rest and watching me go about my own stupidity.
Good. They’re welcome here. One of at least five different daily visitor species here.
If you’re seeing Butterflies in the yard and want more, the next step is to leave a little fruit out there for them to find. The Fairchild Gardens in South Miami does exactly that in their butterfly house. A little banana or orange goes a long way to help these beautiful creatures survive.
As for the Iguanas? I hear they’re good in a Curry Sauce. Chicken of the Trees!