Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Vegetation decorative and edible: plus invertebrates

We seem to be getting rain at pretty much the right time to get the garden happening this year.  (Also getting the brambles and briars happening, but that is another story.)  This afternoon we did some stuff in the garden and I took a few images that may be of interest - especially for those in the North who maybe finding colour and daylight a bit hard to come by.

These flowers come from a large bed on the Eastern side of our house, which Frances has pretty much created from scratch.
The first 2 images are of Penstemons.

 These foxgloves appear to self regenerated from last year's flowers which is good.
 After many attempts we have some Acanthus flowerig: and very attractive they are as well!
We have a row of Globe Artichokes along the bottom of the bed, partly for appearance, but they are on the menu for tonight.
In addition to these 'pure exotics' we have some nice Australian Natives - possibly not from anywhere close to here - blooming.
This is a mini-melaleuca
 and a small leptospermum
In the purely edible department the strawberries continue to go gang-busters.  I didn't pick yesterday so got about 2.5kgs this morning.
 The broad beans are also going extremely well.  There is probably one more pick like this before we remove them.
There were a few invertebrates around.  As with last year I intend to take images of the ones which interest due to their colouration or structure.

The first was an Icheumenon wasp that visited our kitchen window this morning.  Neither Brisbane insects nor Life Unseen are strong on the Latin for this family and I think it is the second Banded Pupa wasp on the former site.  It is clearly a female - no male would be seen in public with an ovipositor like that!
While picking the strawberries I have noticed these tiny (perhaps 20mm) grasshoppers most days.  Brisbane Insects is silent about 'hoppers which like strawberries!
Looking over at our vines I found lots of flowers and several of these caterpillars wandering about with their biting parts.  Although visually attractive, there were several less of them after I passed by.
On returning indoors this spider was found wandering around on the floor.
More research is needed to ID it.

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