a flies eyes

FLies_eyes_1

It is always a surprise when we look closely and find a flies eyes attached to what we thought was a bees body. Using Batesian mimicry to look like a bee when your really a fly a bee-fly mimic and yellow-jacket mmimic enjoy a sip of nectar from a late blooming sedum plant.

Flies_eyes_2

It is always a surprise and reason to take a closer look at the insects in the garden.

 

Hey Daddy-O

Long_daddy_legs_1

Hey daddy-o what’s up?

Just hanging out enjoying the flowers in the garden.

Daddy Long Legs belong to a family of spiders Pholcidae, commonly known as cellar spiders, daddy long-legs spider, granddaddy long-legs spider, carpenter spider, daddy long-legger, vibrating spider and skull spider, is a family of araneomorph spiders first described by Ludwig Carl Christian Koch in 1850. It contains over 1800 species divided in 94 genera.”

Given the huge number of species might explain why we see them running about everywhere in the yard and often in the house all the time.

The fruits of their labor

Fruits_1

Working hard from spring through summer the plants have done their thing. Now all that hard work is  proudly on display.

The Choke Cherries have ripened and will provide food for bears and birds and even a human or two.

Fruits_2

The Oregon Grape has produced berries of purple-blue that will help feed the grouse and pheasants as well as waxwings.

Fruits_3Fruits_4

The wild rose has a a tough go of it as these bushes are a favorite food of deer. These Rose Hips were hanging high on the only branch not trimmed low to the ground by a local family of deer. A mother Mule Deer and her two fawns can really make quick work of a rose bush.

Fruits_5Fruits_6

The snowberry bushes are numerous and cover the forest understory. This year they have done well and the berries will provide food for songbirds, game birds and many small mammals as winter rolls into town.

Fruits_7Fruits_8

The plants have been busy and the fruits of their labor show.

Rocky Mountain Bee Plant: Cleome serrulata

Bee_101
Rocky Mountain Bee Plant: Cleome serrulata was a wonderful late blooming wildflower near us this year. It drew numerous species of bees, and butterflies, from near and far and always had visitors when in bloom providing pollinators with a generous sip of nectar.

Bee_102

Growing up to 4 ft tall Bee Plant stands out in the fields of tall fall grasses.A beautiful and very sculptural wildflower Bee Plant is fun to photograph as well.

Bee_103

According to the USDA “Cleome serrulata is an important cultural plant for many Southwestern Indian tribes. The young, tender shoots and leaves are good sources of vitamin A and calcium. In the past they were used as potherbs or medicinally as teas for fevers and other ailments. The seeds were ground and used to make gruel or bread. The Navajo still use the plant as a source of yellow-green dye for their beautiful wool rugs and blankets. Many pueblo tribes use a concentrated form of dye, made from boiling the plant into a thick black resin, to paint designs on pottery or for decorating their baskets.”

Bee_104

On this particular afternoon the little green sweat bees were enjoying the plant to no end.

Bee_105

Every flower seems to have a visitor.

Bee_106

And one last look as even the bee fly mimics got in on the action.

Bee_107