Friday, April 23, 2010

The Hummers (birds, not vehicles) are here

Image: Wikipedia

The first hummingbird of the season arrived at my feeder this morning; a beautiful, male ruby-throated bird.  A true spirit-lifter!  I was fortunate to be looking out the window at the time (an activity in which I engage all too much), checking my other bird feeders for visitors.

My hummingbird feeder has been up for almost a week, ever since I was alerted by Gardening Daughter that her sage is beginning to bloom, a sure sign (to her) that hummingbirds will be arriving soon.

I have been visited in recent days by a horde of flashing-winged male goldfinches. They are late-comers, having been preceded by the females by several weeks.  They are good eaters, those little birds; I have to fill their feeders every day. They prefer Niger Thistle seed, a pricy, but well worth the cost, bird food.  Ah, well --you know what is said about money: "you can't take it with you."
The perennial plants in my flower beds which have lain dormant through the winter are emerging. My Tropicana Cannas are back in full force, surrounded by weeds, I fear.  I've got a bit of work to do there; the chickweed is rampant. Fortunately, chickweed is easy to pull out -- the growth is in the stems, not in the roots.

I can tell my memory's going. When I look at the emerging shoots, I realize I've lost track of what's what in some cases. Lilies I recognize, but there are other plants about which I have no clue. I'll just have to wait until the blooms come to be sure what I've got.  Can I say create a "Garden Layout?" 

I've purchased a few new plants for the front beds. I lost my lavender to the excessive rain we had late last year. I intend to replace it with two different varieties, and think I may place them in a large pot where I can control the water input. Lavender doesn't like wet feet, I've been told. 

I also bought new herbs: sage, basil and rosemary.  My small rosemary also bit the dust over the winter. I know that rosemary can live for years if it's in the right place.  Just last summer, I finally removed a 20-yr old plant that had been damaged by an ice-laden falling limb.

It's a sort of gloomy day today.  Rain is in the forecast, and I hope it materializes. We need it, badly.  Our city is under a "burn ban" for the entire month of April.  I'm not a burner, except in drastic situations, preferring to send my yard "trash" to the city's compost facility.  Such stuff is picked up at the curb every Wednesday. What could be easier?

Wishing you all a happy week end.

More, later.


Anonymous said...

Oh Pat, I just love em. A bit early for them here yet. We've only so far seen the redwings and teh robins. We get quite a group that pass through and the hummers stick around all summer. It's been a lovely spring this year all round. Thanks for the lovely post.

jinksy said...

Humming birds? Magic! Aren't you lucky? Only magpies and pigeons round here...

Snap said...

Good to see you. Enjoy your hummers ... and your mysery garden ...let's see what comes up!

Countrygirl said...

Hummers are one of my favorites. Sorry it's been a gloomy day for you and your plants, but good things will come. Good to see you again!

Sniffles and Smiles said...

We have a Hummingbird Bush...They are such beautiful birds! And I'm afraid I've never been good at remember what was planted's always like Christmas when Spring plants emerge from their beds...Problem is that I might plant something that my husband later decides needs to be moved...and thus, the plants mysteriously "walk"...((laughing)). Your garden sounds absolutely beautiful...I think you must have a wonderfully green thumb! And I remember your gorgeous photos from last year...and so I KNOW we'll have a real treat here in a few weeks! Love you! Janine XO

Peter said...

It was so lovely to read about your garden and your garden visitors. We do have goldfinches here, no doubt a home sick immigrant imported them to New Zealand, but alas, no humming birds. I would dearly love to see them one day, they look utterly magical in photographs.

You certainly live in a climate of extremes. It is interesting to read of a plant that was damaged by an ice-laden falling limb, and to also know just how hot it can get. I did not realise that you sometimes suffered from a lack of water. Our own area is very dry, and we often have what we call a "green drought", where there is just about enough rainfall to keep grass green, but not enough to make it grow, or get any moisture into the rock hard soil. We have water restrictions here at the moment.

Anyway, lovely to hear news from you. I often think of you.

Hilary said...

I always look forward to seeing what pops up in your garden. You post the greatest flower pics.. your lilies being tops. Humming birds though.. elusive and beautiful. Ours won't be around for a couple of months still.

Arkansas Patti said...

Aren't Hummers the best? I too only have one at my feeder right now but am sure they will swell in number soon.
Glad someone else is subject to surprise growth in the yard. Thought it was just me.
We are getting a grand rain now and I hope it knocks down the pollen. Sure has been a dry spring till now.

NitWit1 said...

Wow you have more energy than I do. Today between DR visits I hope to get my hanging baskets together so I can buy some marigolds. At least I know the deer will leave them alone!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

I haven't seen our Hummingbirds YET.... I have one feeder out --but have more to put out once I see one... Hopefully, they will be here SOON. Last year, I made a note that they were HERE on April 24....

I'm so glad they are in Arkansas now!!!!

Snowbrush said...

And a happy weekend to you too.

Here, the city composts leaves and yard waste, but I've not heard composting trash other than that.