Garden snail

Little garden snails are common here on top of the mountain. This one was unusual in its size, about .75 inches in diameter, and the ridges along its spiral. Most of the shells we find are much smaller, smooth and transparent.

Vacant garden snail shell
Vacant garden snail shell.

Hunting for breakfast

Flower crab spider makes two tries for breakfast. ┬áThe first one, the wasp, got away. The second, a small beetle, may be lunch by now. (sorry, didn’t stick around to see how the story ended.)

The trouble with grasshoppers

Drought has forced grasshoppers and other insects to light on anything green and lush — and that usually means something you’re growing and watering carefully. Grasshoppers have stripped the leaves off the kitchen garden thyme and cut large swaths from leaves of the citrus and apple trees on the deck.

The real problem is when they’re not eating, they’re making more grasshoppers.

XXX-Is a cutline really necessary?

In Aunt Betty’s Garden

Aunt Betty in Minnesota has a terrific garden. ┬áBeautifully balanced between shade and sun, all surrounded by that lush, deep green northern grass that southern lawns can’t grow. It is a lovely refuge from everything stressful.

Garden butterfly
Butterfly in Betty's garden.
White hydrangea, backlit
"Pure" is the only word that describes the light shining through this white hydrangea.
Orange flowers
These orange flowers stood out among the green in the shade garden.
Grandpa Ott morning glory closeup
The rich violet velvet of this Grandpa Ott morning glory trumpet, contrasted with its white throat, makes it seem to radiate its own light in the morning.
Orb spider
This slender orb spider rests in its web strung between black-eyed susans.
Hosta leaf
A hosta leaf captures a shadow in the afternoon light of a late summer day.