Backyard Pond

Discussion of backyard pond, frogs, goldfish and plants.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Mystery Bird Visits the Pond

We caught a picture of a very interesting bird visiting the pond last week. As you can see he was a bit too close to the lens to allow a good focus but you can get some idea of his features. The distinctive orange beak and the white feathers are probably pretty unusual. I looked around the web and maybe this is a White Zebra Finch. It does look like he is challenging me to guess with the front view and then the side view - maybe he has escaped and is used to posing for mug shots.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Red Eyed Bullfrog and Floating Green Frog

The Bullfrog in the small pond found a great corner to lounge in and stared as I took some pictures. If you click on it for the larger version, you can see a bright color in his eyes that looks kind of evil. He has been sitting in this corner on and off for the past week overseeing his small pond domain.
Meanwhile over in the large pond, one of our resident Green Frogs hanging on a rock next to a new plant we purchased last week. The plant is supposed to be an oxygenator, but at any rate the frogs seem to like it. We hope it will grow since it is quite delicate and adds some interesting textures to the pond.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Poinsettia Experiment & Unfazed Deer

This year we are trying a Poinsettia experiment. Every year before Christmas we buy Poinsettia and this year we bought five because they were such a good price. Usually we put the Poinsettias outside for the summer and most of the time they get leggy and we dispose of them. Two of the Poinsettias from December 07 looked good enough to bring inside for the winter. In this picture, they are the leggy ones surrounded by the ones from December 08. In the experiment, we planted them in the ground with hopes they will grow much larger. Meanwhile a Deer was grazing nearby while I was working on the plants and he very patiently posed for a picture.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Hawk by Day, Raccoon by Night

I was thinking I hadn't see any of the large predators in a couple of weeks but then... This week the Hawk was strutting his stuff at the end of the pond next to the beautiful Louisiana Iris plants. I didn't get any picture of him fishing, just walking around the end of the pond. And then two nights later a Raccoon came to visit again. We haven't seen one of them in a while but here he is checking out all the plants that have moved outside for the summer.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Stunningly Beautiful Louisiana Iris

The first couple of years our Louisiana Iris plants were a big disappointment. But then last year they were better and this year they are gorgeous. This one has at least eight blooms open at the same time with more on the way and it has been blooming like this for 2 weeks. Photo number two is a close-up of one of the blooms showing the striking designs of color. I sure am glad we didn't give up on these plants.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Black Magic Recovers from Winter

After spending the winter in the greenhouse, the Black Magic is pushing up shoots. My wife was checking the greenhouse the other day and said "they plants are really trying, they need to get into the pond." So into the ponds they went. If history repeats, in a month they will be quite dramatic plants. It appears that 5 Black Magic pots survived the winter and should recover in the warmth of spring and summer.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Elephant Ears Waking Up

The Elephant Ears are waking up after a six month sleep and they are looking good. Once again, I left them in the ground over the winter and as you can see a bunch of them lived to provide a great display again. The first picture show them behind the pond - some are already a foot tall. The second is the planting in the middle of the yard. These are not as tall yet, maybe because they are less sheltered. At any rate, we are looking forward to beautiful plants with giant leaves again this year.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Silver Frog on the Fence

A beautiful surprise when we were greeted by a silver frog on the fence out front. We saw the frog the morning after a night of frog singing and partying. There were a bunch of frog eggs in the pots behind the fence so I suspect this frog was resting after a busy night of continuing the species. We usually get beautiful baby frogs in the pots behind the fence. Hope that will happen again this year.

Incredible Nest Builder

There is a new next builder in town who builds a fine looking next. The first picture is a top view of last years nest with the babies in it. The second is this years nest - built somewhat like an igloo with a small entry hole on the side. It was amazing to watch this nest being build. The bird made a bunch of trips over several days bringing in small pieces of construction material and adding it to the growing structure. The final product is quite a work of art. The only problem is, we haven't seen the birds since the nest was finished - don't know what happen to him.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Small Pond Bullfrog

Hunting for wildlife sometimes takes an extra set of eyes. It helps to have your trusty Great Dane helping find the fun stuff in the pond.
And then all the sudden you look in the small pond and there is a Bullfrog who has taken up residence. He's a little hard to see in the picture but he is pretty big. In fact, yesterday we removed the cover from one of the chairs and there he was lounging under the chair. After the initial surprise, we stared at each other for a minute and then he hopped over and jumped into his pond.