Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Fields of Gold

Yesterday and today we are getting some much needed rain, but before the rain started, the weather here was glorious. It was a wonderful day to wander around with the camera. I was stunned by the beauty of the goldenrod in the meadow. We have perhaps five types of goldenrod growing here. It makes for a very long period of bloom. While some kinds bloomed in late August and early September and have gone to seed , others are blooming now. It gives the Monarch butterflies a very long window of opportunity to feed on their way South.

This area is back by the pond and tends to be wet. The ground is uneven with many large rocks and areas that collect standing water when it rains. The goldenrod thrives here.

The high meadow is basically gravel. It is always well drained and dry. Goldenrod thrives here as well. As a food plant for the Monarchs it is perfect. It is there for them no matter what the weather and no matter when they hatch out. On this particular day many bright shiny new Monarch were sighted. Some were feeding on the goldenrod while others flew up high, catching the wind, and heading South.

Milkweed that has been mowed and still has green leaves continues to be munched on by Monarch caterpillars. The butterflies lay their eggs over a long period to insure maximum chance for survival. I admit the child in me is still fascinated with butterflies. To me they are magical. I'm so happy we have a such a great place for them here.

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