The garden hosts an array of creatures, some seemingly primitive, some rather magical. Which is which? The beholder gets to choose.
First up, this well-camouflaged mantis was actually upside down when we met.
When I checked on him a few minutes later he had climbed up and was walking along the top back of a bench on the front porch.
This 40-second video gives you some idea of how the mantis stealthily moved along, wary that I was watching him.
Each year I stumble across one of these spiders and am eternally grateful I did not stumble into the web. This yellow garden spider (also known as writing spider) was camped out in the center of the meditation circle on August 9, 2017. A few days later she was gone.
The garden has hosted lots of bees this summer and they have been drawn to this plant all summer, Salvia uliginosa ‘Blue Sky.’
Bees are also partial to Echinacea (Purple Coneflower).
Not that I can identify them but my home state of North Carolina has more than 500 native bee species. Turn up the sound for this video of bees and coneflower and you also will hear a few of the garden’s birds in the background.
I included a 3-second video of this bee mainly to share the white swan coneflower, which really has been beautiful this season.
At the southern entrance to the garden a towering Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower) hosts a multitude of insects including this unknown Lepidoptera.
You may remember this guy from a few days ago. I misidentified it as Eastern Cicada Killer but it is Milesia virginiensis (Virginia Flower Fly). Just wanted to set the record straight.
Time to wrap this up. I will close with a tattered butterfly nectaring on zinnias. The zinnia foliage has become rather tattered and scarred, although fresh flowers continue to form. I think this is a female Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus).