More Insects and Some Projects

 

An Imperial Moth caterpillar that fell out of the oak. It isn’t dead, but the yellowjacket is eating its head, either because it was parasitized or injured, or from pure predation, if the caterpillar dropped to pupate. I’ve seen yellowjackets carry away entire green caterpillars, when only slightly larger than themselves. Another yellowjacket arrived, and they both took bites and flew away with them. 

 

 

A katydid (a type of cricket) on my aloe plant, taking bites. The camera caught the detail of its wings and legs nicely. Note its backwards-facing claws, that hook onto its perch.  

 

My back-border bed, with a little improvement. The steppingstone path looks good, makes working in the bed easier, and stone keeps roots protected, moister, and the temperatures they’re subjected to more even through the year. 

Next year’s vegetable bed, that I’m beginning this year. Assembling the box was easy; and it cost about $60 from Amazon. It measures 6 foot x 3 foot, by 1 foot high. A box this size would take dozens of bags of compost to fill, so I bought it this late summer, allowing me to keep topping it off with organic material (the bale of straw to start, then leaves and mower clippings, and homemade compost), that will decompose through the fall, winter, and early spring. The trellises are to support beans and peas. I had a so so year trying to grow veg in 2022, while learning a few more necessary facts about getting my edibles past the animals and the oak tree roots. Next year, I propose to have potatoes, corn, beans, and peas in this bed, and tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, and carrots in pots.

And to protect them with deer fencing. I’m still thinking about my apple trees and what I can use to keep deer from stripping the leaves, besides bird netting, which either has to sit on the leaves and weigh them, or be suspended in some way, and risk catching butterflies. 

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