Bird Nesting Time!

Bird Nesting Time! index3 index

The birds have started pulling the fibers out of the Alpaca Nesting Ball, so that can mean only one thing…

Bird Nesting Time!!

 

 

I put out my birdhouses this morning in anticipation of the babies to come, and we’ve already had birds going in to check them out! First day! Spring is near – I’m so excited.

Bird Nesting Time! Bird Nesting Time!

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Breaking Down Leaves

Breaking Down LeavesThanks to Kevin Lee Jacobs for this great information that I want to save for next spring. How to break down the last of those fall leaves that you use to fill your flower beds? Kevin suggests Cottonseed Meal (which I’d never heard of).

To help the leaves break down, I sometimes sprinkle a handful of organic cottonseed meal over each 6×4 bed. Cottonseed meal is almost all-nitrogen. It is nitrogen plus carbon (from the dried leaves)  that produces heat. However, if the weather is already frigid, it makes little sense to add cottonseed meal at this time. You can always add it in early spring if your own leaves have not decayed sufficiently.

Thanks, Kevin. Can’t wait to try this out.

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How to Get Hummingbirds in Your Yard!

How to Get Hummingbirds in Your Yard!

 

We have a lot of hummingbirds and I always want more! They’re so tiny and amazing. Here’s a great post I found on Houzz. Enjoy!
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How to Keep Squirrels out of Your Birdfeeders

How to Keep Squirrels out of Your Birdfeeders

Got birdfeeders? Then I bet you have squirrels!

I have birdfeeders – lots and lots of birdfeeders. I go through about 25 pounds of birdseed a month. And, as much as I love feeding the birds, feeding the squirrels is not my goal. We have lots of trees with nuts and acorns so our squirrels are not going hungry. I really fight to keep them out of the feeders.

My first attempt at controlling them was to invest in “squirrel proof birdfeeders” and that works fine. However, I have many truly lovely birdfeeders that are not at all squirrel proof and I really want to be able to use them!

Finally, I made the most amazing discovery – Safflower Seed!

How to Keep Squirrels out of Your BirdfeedersThe cardinals absolutely LOVE it as do many other birds. The amazing thing, however, is that my squirrels hate it!

So now I have seed mixes in my “squirrel proof” feeders and Safflower seed in my pretty feeders and my squirrel feeding problem is solved.

Have you found any tricks to share?

How to Keep Squirrels out of Your Birdfeeders

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Japanese Maples

I’m a HUGE fan of Japanese Maples. I don’t even know how many I have!

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March Gardens

It’s exactly mid-March and I can’t believe how much is already peaking out in the gardens! I love this time of year when I find new sprouts every day. Fabulous North Carolina      (zone 7).

March Blooms

Hellebores

March Blooms

Hellebores

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Blooms

Hydrangea

March Blooms

Geranium

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Blooms

Trillium

 

March Blooms

Sedum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Blooms

Yellow Brugmansia

These are just some of the examples of what I have popping out. What’s already growing this Spring in your yard?

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Angel Trumpet

Well, perhaps I spoke to soon in my last post.

Here it is, November 1st, and my Brugmansia is still blooming!

Angel Trumpet

Angel Trumpet

IMG_2643

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Yellow Brugmansia – Angel Trumpet

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia at full bloom.

Do you have, or have you ever had, a Brugmansia? They are lovely, as you see here. Mine is a yellow one and this is a photo showing it in it’s full glory. Fabulous.

However….

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia with faded blooms.

As beautiful as the blooms are, and they are spectacular, they last only about 3-5 days. Seriously.

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia bloom.

My plant is in a pot on the deck and I literally have to water it every day, 7 days a week. A friend of mine planted hers in the ground and only watered once a week. So far, she’s had only one bloom.

Yellow Brugmansia

Yellow Brugmansia flower

As lovely as this is, I just don’t think it’s worth all the time and effort for one week of flowers. I don’t mind watering my tomato plants daily because they fruit for months. The Brugmansia simply doesn’t bring me the same satisfaction. This may be my only year with this plant.

Your experience?

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Bird Feeders – My Most Recent Obsession

And I can’t seem to stop…

Bird Feeders - My Most Recent Obsession

Bird Feeders and Bath

Bird Feeders - My Most Recent Obsession

Where do they all come from?

Bird Feeders - My Most Recent Obsession

Happy Birds everywhere – including the trees and bushes!

Bird Feeders - My Most Recent Obsession

We suddenly have so many hummingbirds!

Bird Feeders - My Most Recent Obsession

Cardinals love this crescent shaped feeder.

If you don’t yet have feeders and/or a bird bath, I strongly suggest you get some. Hours and hours of fascination and fun!

Please, let me know your experience with birds and what else I should add.

:)

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Keep Snakes Out of Your Bird House!

Keep Snakes Out of Your Bird House!

I have the most wonderful birdhouse. I love it so much and was thrilled last Spring when a momma bird immediately adopted it as home for her upcoming little ones.

In only a matter of days, we heard the chirping of her baby hatchlings. I felt like a proud grandparent.

And then it happened —

About 3pm one beautiful, sunny afternoon I walked out our front door and was stopped by the most awful sounds – momma and daddy bird screaming hysterically. I had no idea birds could scream so.

But there, hanging out of my beautiful birdhouse was about 2.5 feet of snake swinging back and forth. I watched in horror as the rest of him slithered into the nest.

Keep Snakes Out of Your Bird House!

It was literally three weeks before I could go back out that door. And quite some time before I could take down the birdhouse to clean it out. It was no longer my wonderful birdhouse, but my snake feeder. I did not want a snake feeder.

I know this is how nature works, but I don’t want it to work this way in my yard.

So I began researching how to protect future baby hatchlings – or no more birdhouse for me (definitely no snake feeder).

Low and behold, my garden teacher, Ellen Ashely, gave me the answer.

Slinky!!!

Keep Snakes Out of Your Bird House!

It’s so easy, everyone should be using it. Simply slide a slinky over the post to your birdhouse and the snake can’t slither up. Not only is it easy, but barely detectable.

Safe birds, safe birdhouse, no more snake feeder.

Here you can see the slinky on my newest birdhouse as well  :)

Keep Snakes Out of Your Bird House!

Thanks, Ellen!

 

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