Many visitors to this blog, and my blogger friends, have commented on my photos of butterflies and bees. What is it that draws myriad lives to a small garden? Wildlife wasn't foremost on my mind when I first started sowing seeds ages ago! I was happy with the fleeting sight of the birds and the bees. But I never really gave it much thought!
Ever since I started blogging I've added more and more plants. And I actually started to notice every little creature who happened to fly by. Although I keep posting garden wildlife pictures I still have TONS of them. It's amazing to realize how many tiny lives count my garden as a source of sustenance on a day-to-day basis. This post is all about my plants as a food source for my visitors and garden residents.
Guavas from my two trees are ripening at the moment. The above photo is from a recent harvest...placed on a bed of Sunset Bells/ Chrysothemis pulchella and Musical notes/Clerodendron incisum.
I was really happy to see what looked like a Common Evening Brown feasting on one that'd fallen on a sand pile.
This photo, and the next four, show the winter look in my garden. Butterflies I had never seen before came calling every single day! And many of them have continued to do so. Swallowtails, the Pansies, skippers and the paler ones like the Psyche, Albatross, Cabbage Whites, Emigrants, Grass Yellows and those tiny common blues.
Apart from the bees pictured here there were other kinds too. Hummingbird moths were here in broad daylight.
This is my front yard As you can see it's small and there's no grassy patch in the middle. That's because water-logging is a an issue here, especially during the summer months. This photo was taken in Febrary. At the far end on the right is a clump of palm trees. The Golden Cane Palm or Butterfly Palm blooms in May. By that time the winter flowers start to fade and wither away so the focus for the wildlife shifts there.
Also around the same time the Indian Blackberry tree is laden with fruit and the Ashoka blooms prolifically. The activity never really stops! Both trees are not seen in the picture.
A million blooms fall on the ground and look who's high on ambrosia?!!
If you click on this picture you'll see two brown butterflies feeding on the fruit. The previous day I had lopped off an invasive climber, the Grape-leaf Wood Rose and the area hadn't been cleaned!
Here's what the bloom looks like. Ipomoea vitifolia grows wild here. Although it needs to be constantly trimmed, I love the yellow blooms!
A Butterfly Palm without butterflies? That cannot be!! Here's a female Common Palmfly butterfly taking a break from feasting!
The male isn't done yet! Gorge on! The birds make it easier for the butterflies. They peck on the fruit and the flesh gets exposed. No wonder it's a favourite watering hole for the 'browns'!
To peck or not to peck, that is the question!
It isn't only the Asian Pied Starling who comes to feed here. The bulbuls, who recently raised a family on the upper portion of the clump, love the fruit too!
With all the insects converging here, can the skink be far behind? I found this one lying in wait....Although I haven't got a picture of a marsh mongoose I've seen it/them in the vicinity several times.
A constant in my garden is the Mexican Heather. The smaller, paler butterflies are happy to be here, every single day!
Other wildlife are dragonflies and damselflies, and several bugs I've not been able to identify (as yet). And lizards! So it isn't without the feeling that when I walk out into my yard I'll come across someone enjoying a bite or a sip out there!
Glory be to God for dappled things- For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow; For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim; Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches' wings; Landscape plotted and pieced--fold, fallow, and plough; And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim. All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?) With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim; He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: Praise him. Gerard Manley Hopkins
The first flowering shrub I planted on our land
Every flower is a soul blooming in Nature.-Gerard De Nerval
Shall I not have intelligence with the earth? Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mould myself? -Henry David Thoreau