Creating a wildlife haven one plant at a time

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

GBBD: The Bulbs & Bees

I am so excited. The bulbs that I planted last fall have emerged and are beginning to bloom.  You may be wondering why I am so ecstatic over a few little bulbs. Well, these are the first bulbs that have been planted at Southern Meadows. We have an ostensibly large vole population that has devoured so many of our plants that I have always hesitated planting bulbs. But due to our proactive measures of lining the beds with chicken wire and small rock they survived the demise of the voles.

The Daffodil hanging its head before it begins to open.


Slowly it begins to lift its head as it opens.




The tightly wrapped layers begin to unfold.



Until finally it reveals its full face.


A close up of the important parts (dare I say reproductive parts) of the flower.


Here is the rear view of the bloom. Good thing I am talking about a flower otherwise this would be downright scandalous.




Other bulbs planted this fall are these beautiful hyacinths. 


They are incredibly fragrant and colorful. Color serves to attract honeybees, which unlike most insects, have color vision.


My hyacinths have succeeded in attracting the pollinators! Here they come...


And, in for the landing...


If you take a look at the back legs of the bee you can see the large pollen sacks. It is grabbing pollen from one bloom and taking it to the next.


I had a great time watching these busy bees hard at work. They didn't even seem to mind my camera lens poking in their faces.



I was so focused on the bees that I didn't even notice the first Black Swallowtail of the year until I lifted my head out of the flowers. I felt a bit like Flower the Skunk from the Disney story Bambi who always had her nose down in the flowers. Like bees, butterflies and moths also have keenly developed senses of smell and are great pollinators. They smell with their antennae and taste with their feet.


Today is Garden Blogger Bloom Day and this is my first time posting. I hope you will go over to May Dreams Gardens and see what other gardeners around the world have blooming in their gardens.

Happy Gardening!

22 comments:

  1. Love the title of this post. ;) Thanks for sharing that pretty metamorphasis.

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  2. The Ice Follies are great Daffs...I can almost smell the perfume of the Hyacinth...so nice to have the bees and butterflies in the garden. And oh the measures we go to , to have flowers!

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  3. How exciting that you have already seen a Black Swallowtail in your garden this year! My husband caught sight of the first butterfly of the season Sunday afternoon but he didn't recognize it and I didn't see it at all.

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  4. I love your bee shots. All your images are really good, but those bees...darling. I would have missed the swallowtail too, Karin. Happy, happy, GBBD.

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  5. How incredible are these photos...and the critters...brightened my cold morning...thx

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  6. Love the bee shots! I, too, can become obsessed watching the bees pollinate my lemon tree blossoms! I must have 100 photos of them doing their work! Beautiful photos of the daffodil unfolding!

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  7. An excellent first post for GBBD. The unfolding daffodil is exquisite.

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  8. Bulbs too!! will those voles stop at nothing. Looks like you've had good results with your damage control, I may have to take notes. I have a few nasty words to say about voles this week.

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  9. Your description of the opening daffodil is great! I'm so happy for you to have found some success with your bulbs...it puts a smile on my face Karin! Happy bloom day.

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  10. Hi Karin, It's good to see bees in your garden too. Do you notice the difference between the bees in our gardens? Yours seem to have a furry scarf around the neck area.

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  11. Beautiful blooms!! So glad you joined in on GBBD! Great bee shots! I saw the first swallowtail yesterday, too, but it wouldn't sit still long enough to get a picture. It almost seemed out of place so early in the spring without all of the summer flowers, but exciting to see it flitting around :-) Hopefully the voles are history in your garden!

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  12. What beautiful photographs, and how lovely to have your first bulbs flowering, despite the hungry voles. Joining GBBD seems like a great way to celebrate. The Black Swallowtail is amazing.

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  13. I completely understand your excitement at "a few little bulbs" come to life. Love your daffodil study. And those darn critters--I just ran off a squirrel who was digging at the base of my alliums! May garden voles and squirrels be our greatest worries. Happy GBBD.

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  14. Amazing bee captures! No matter how long I wait, they just won't pose for me...

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  15. Love the way you photographed the opening of your daffodil. And your bee pictures are amazing! Nice post.

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  16. How fun! The photos and the cropping are great. Wonderful to see the Daffodil opening and the bees pollinating the Hyacinths. I have a Hyacinth bulb that I need to plant for next year's blooms...

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  17. Your photos are very beautiful.
    Glad to meet you through GBBD.
    Greetings from Belgium !

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  18. Karin, I understand your excitement with bulbs, it happened to me last year and I felt the same, it's so beautiful see the colors after waiting so long! Congrats on the beautiful specimens and images! p.s.: so funny the countdown for spring on top!

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  19. Love, love the daffodil close-up shots (not to mention the commentary that went with it.) So psyched to have found this blog and will be back often.

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  20. You've got an early worker in your garden!!! What enjoyable flowers!

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  21. Karin, I celebrate the pollinators in your garden! They are beautifully captured and a joy to behold. gail

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  22. Beautiful photos of wonderful pollinators! I love the colors visible in your swallowtail image -- breathtaking!

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"Don't wait for someone to bring you flowers. Plant your own garden and decorate your soul"

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