CadMur Manor's "Certified Wildlife Habitat" is in peak form and full of activity, even when Siegfried From KAOS and Sheba aren't living wildly outdoors.
This year's winners include the usual suspects: purple coneflowers, milkweed, lamium purple dragon, bee balm, Jupiter's beard, creeping juniper, Eastern prickly pear, shrub roses, May night sage, joe pye weed, itea sweetspire, hydrangea bush, clematis, moonflower, butterfly bushes, river birch, kousa dogwood, sweetbay magnolia and Japanese maple. All looking good. And, we've mulched and stayed on top of the weeds.
Our rhododendrons not so much. One looks good, but its two neighbors are not happy. Need to figure a solution for them next year.
While the creeping phlox is okay, the standing phlox and the hydrangea bushes have become deer salad. These had not been disturbed (much) in previous years. I'm happy to accommodate our white-tailed visitors (as well as the rabbits) in keeping with our goal of being a habitat for wildlife, but Sophie would prefer they find something else to eat, somewhere else to go. We have had more deer scat here than any of the 9 previous summers. And as I said in a previous post, they may be less fearful of visiting since we put up new "window treatments" to try to keep Siegfried and Sheba from going crazy all the time at anything that moves outside.
We're both happy with all the other wildlife we've attracted this year, including a host of birds (including hummingbirds and some nesting house wrens), a variety of bees, a few wasps and other insects, moths, monarchs and other butterflies, and an occasional squirrel, chipmunk or field mouse. And snakes. I've only seen garter snakes, but I found a handsome shedded skin in our holly, too long I think to have come from a garter. I'm not sure what else it may have come from. And I have not seen two of my favorites: luna moths (which have a one-week lifespan during the adult stage, in early June) or clearwing hummingbird moths (which have been very common here in all of the previous summers).
If you're in the neighborhood, please stop by for a visit and tour of the garden. We'd love to see you.