Backyard Pond

Discussion of backyard pond, frogs, goldfish and plants.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Frogs Galore in the Cisterns

 In the back yard, we have three cisterns that get progressively smaller and lower.  The largest one overflows into the next and that one overflows to the lowest one.  The frogs love these cisterns.  In the first picture you can just barely see a green tree frog in the overflow pipe from the largest cistern.  We never noticed this last year so it appears to be a new habit by the tree frog.  In the second picture is a frog convention with eight frogs hanging out in the lowest cistern.  It is hard to see because of the bright sunshine but they are having a great time.  In deference to the frogs, we've stopped taking water from the lowest cistern.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

New Oak Leaf Hydrangea

 Last year we transplanted three Oak Leaf Hydrangeas from out 10 year old plants that have done very well into pots.  This one rooted and thrived in the pot so we looked for a spot to plant it in the ground.  This corner at the chain link fence looked like a great location.  We used bamboo from our bamboo grove to define the planting bed.  Now it is up to Mother Nature to help this plant grow as large as the other Hydrangeas.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Wonderful Buck Close-up

 One of the fun stories this summer is seeing several Bucks hanging around in the front yard.  I can't say if this Buck and Doe are having a smooch or an argument but they are striking a nice pose.  The second picture is maybe the same Buck posing for a picture as if he knew the camera was there just for him.  I hope the Bucks continue to come around as their antlers fully develop.

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Watermelon Volunteers

 We have been making compost from fruits and vegetables for five years and using the compost to amend the soil in pots and gardens.  Every year we are pleased to see volunteers from the compost in the garden.  This year we transplanted a volunteer from the garden into a pot and watermelons started growing.  The first one in the pot shriveled after a couple of weeks but the one on the deck is still growing.  The vine doesn't seem big enough to support a large melon but we are hopeful.

Monday, August 03, 2015

Great Looking Deer Family

 Some great family photos in the front yard.  These pictures are two weeks apart and we aren't sure they are the same Deer families but there are two cute little babies in each. 

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Mystery Critter

 A couple of nights ago, the camera caught a picture of a mystery critter in the front yard.  Too bad the picture isn't clearer so it would be easier to identify this critter.  The bushy  tail and pointed snout looks a lot like a raccoon but the tail doesn't have the usual stripes.  Hopefully this critter will stay in the front yard and leave the back yard to us.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Two Bucks Staying Up Late

 Last week we captured a number of late night deer pictures.  Over a couple of hours, these two different Bucks wandered in front of the camera.  They stopped long enough to get a fairly clear picture of their growing antlers.  The second guys antlers seem to have a different form than the first guy who's antlers look more normal.

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Buck and Doe

 Another picture of the Buck that has been hanging around this year.  His antlers are continuing to grow.  Here he is hanging around with the Doe.  I hope he still comes around when his antlers are fully developed so we can see how majestic they look.  Meanwhile our Poppers we planted last year are producing a bunch of flowers this year.  They are quite beautiful with the bright orange colors.  We bought two more that we planted behind these to increase the coverage.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Beautiful Mimosa Tree

 The Chocolate Chip Mimosa tree we moved last fall to the middle of the front yard is doing quite well.  We were afraid it wouldn't survive the move because of the large root that was cut during the transplant.  But here it is producing several delicate pink and white flowers and spreading it's leaf covered branches just as we hoped it would.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Here Comes the Elephant Ears

 The Elephant Ears in the back yard survived the cold winter and are coming back up in May.  Last fall we dug up the Elephant Ears in the front yard when we moved the Mimosa tree and stored them in the garage for the winter.  About three weeks ago, we planted them around the pump in the front yard and they are emerging.  We are hoping they will brighten up the area around the pump this summer.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Yucca's Bloom

 The Yucca's are blooming like crazy.  The display in the front yard is beautiful.  One bed has four six foot tall flower stalks and the other has two.  Last year we only had one blooming and that was only a year after we transplanted the Yuccas.  I know it is too much to wish for but it would be nice to repeat this year after year.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Deer are Back

 We've started seeing the deer again and some of the cutest critters ever are the babies.  Here is a baby framed by our iron fence.  Below are two female deer and a young buck  nibbling on some grass in the front yard.  These three seem to wander together frequently.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Yucca Surprise

 Last year we were so excited to get a Yucca flower stalk.  This year is incredible with six Yucca flower stalks and a Mimosa tree coming back strong.  The first picture show the Mimosa tree with four Yucca flower stalks around it.  In the background you can see two more Yucca flower stalks in the bed with the two Magnolias.  After last years Yucca flower, the plant put our six babies.  We potted four of them and two are looking pretty good.  We'll plant them in a couple of week and hope they do as well as their parent.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Box Turtle Rescue

 Earlier this week I walked by the gate to the back yard and saw a strange site.  A baby box turtle had gotten in a serious predicament.  Apparently he was trying to get through the fence by climbing over the bottom bar and through one of the holes in the chain link fence.  The poor thing was stuck with both front and back feet off the ground and was unable to go forward or back.  I pulled him back through the fence and sent him on his way.  Meanwhile over by the water barrels, I grabbed the hose to water some potatoes and a gray colored frog came along for the ride.  He didn't jump off until I put the hose back in its usual place.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Clematis and Pink Lady Slipper

 This is the best year for our Clematis next to the shed door yet.  The flower are huge and opening wide.  It is just gorgeous.  Too bad the display will only last about 2 weeks.  Meanwhile up in the woods our Pink Lady Slipper plants came back.  Unfortunately we didn't get as many as past years.  Maybe the cold winter had an effect on these interesting plants. 

Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Caterpillars Are Out

 We have a tree in the back yard that attracts caterpillar nests and there are a bunch this year.  The nest have started spilling the caterpillars all over the yard.  But some seem attracted to a hanging flower pot sitting next to the shed.  In the first picture they are coating the top of the hook and the second they are massing on one side of the pot.  These things really creep out my wife.  Hope they finish their life cycle soon.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Beautiful Kwanzan Cherry Tree

 If you look back two years, this Kwanzan Cherry tree was much smaller.  It has grown nicely in the past two years and is producing a wonderful display of flowers.  Meanwhile the Rhododendron we planted in a pot on the front patio rewarded us with a full covering of flowers.  The Rhododendrons planted next to the fence haven't bloomed yet.  The pot must have warmed much faster than the ground.  The other night we finally had frog night - about a month later than last year.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Wild Ferns Uncurl

 Another interesting springtime adventure involves the various wild ferns we have growing around the yard.  As they emerge from the ground, the leaves are all curled up.  They slowly uncurl exposing the leaves until they look like a normal fern leaf.  The first picture is a fern just starting to uncurl and the second is one that is almost done.  Very interesting plants.

Monday, April 13, 2015

May Apples Crop

 In the past week several bunches of May Apples have popped up around the yard.  It is interesting how bunches of these plants are scattered around the yard widely separated from each other.  Soon they will be sporting beautiful white flowers under the canopy of leaves above.  In the second picture you can just see the flower bud below the leaves.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Saucer Magnolia Blooms

 Our Saucer Magnolia are blooming again.  The color is quite lovely as spring starts.  This year after the blooms fade, I plan to remove the fence that has been keeping the deer out.  I hope the deer don't develop a taste for these plants.  They are supposed to be deer resistant.