Creating a wildlife haven one plant at a time

Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Day of Firsts

Enjoy the little
things in life
for one day you'll look
back and realize they
were the big things

Ever have one of those days that is filled with joyous little moments that make a day so special. A perfect day in my book.

Yesterday I went to the Georgia Native Plant Society's spring plant sale for the first time. I picked up many wonderful plants. Some I had on my wish list such as the Paw Paw Tree, Spicebush and Mountain Laurel. Some I'd never heard of before but came recommended like fly poison (Amianthium muscitoxicum) and Featherbells (Stenanthium gramineum) and others where just speaking to me including bloodroot and rattlesnake weed (Hieracium venosum) and rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium).

Rattlesnake weed (Hieracium venosum)

A blog that I have been following for a while is Using Georgia Native Plants. If you live in Georgia or even the Southeast this is a blog to follow. You will learn a lot about native plants to include in your garden and why you should. Ellen Honeycutt is the mastermind behind this blog and I got to meet her at the plant sale. She is the first fellow blogger (and native plant enthusiast) that I have met in person. It was such a pleasure!

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

When I returned home from my shopping expedition my husband and daughter informed me that they had found a trillium with a big flower on our new lot. I grabbed my camera and off we went to see this beauty. And there she was standing tall all alone. Our first trillium growing naturally on our lot.


This is a Catesby's Trillium, found in acid soils in rich mesic woods within rhododendron and Mt. Laurel thickets. It grows in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama and Tennessee.


They bloom late March to early June and often start out white and turn pink the older the bloom or once pollinated. Here is a closer look at the reproductive parts. The yellow anthers and white ovary will produce fruit in July or August once pollinated by queen bumblebees. The flower will remain open for 2 to 3 weeks increasing the opportunity for pollination.


When we walked back to the house we spotted the first Zebra Swallowtail of the season on the Indian Hawthorne blooms. What a coincidence since I was just telling a friend earlier that day that I hadn't seen one yet this spring.


The Paw Paw tree that I bought is for this butterfly. I'd better get it in the ground quickly.

Remember when I grabbed my camera to photograph Catesby? Well, I was in such a hurry I left the back door open and a ruby-throated hummingbird made a wrong turn and flew into the house. She was flying around our living room. Crazy girl! Eventually she settled on the window ledge and my husband was able to very gingerly take her in his hands.

Just look into those eyes. She looks scared, probably exhausted but I'd like to think that she knew that we would take good care of her.


Poor thing was in a state of shock but quickly snapped out of it and flew off. She is fine and happily flying around the garden again. I bet she won't make that same detour through the house again! 


We should all have more days like these...filled with magical moments, exciting finds and good deeds.

24 comments:

  1. Wow!! Never had a hummingbird come in the house. Poor little thing.
    Heading over to the Native plant blog, looking forward to it. Super jealous of your trillium. Haven't found any on my property.

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    1. The ironic thing was that I bought this trillium at the plant sale and then got home to find out that I had one growing in the garden already. Oh well, one can never have enough trillium!

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  2. Lovely bloom, lovely butterfly and I can't even imagine the joy of holding that tiny hummingbird.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

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    1. I am thrilled that my husband was able to capture it relatively easily. I am now much more aware of making sure the door is closed so it won't happen again. It is the second bird in my house this spring. The first was a wren that flew into our basement.

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  3. That is amazing you caught the hummingbird. You have to ask your hummingbird expert friends why they like to come inside? My photo perch for photographing birds is inside my small powder room. In summer, when shooting the hummingbirds, I leave the window open (no screen). One day while pointing the lens outside, a hummer came right up to my lens, then flew behind me inside the room. I was shocked. No need to capture, it left itself out. But this is not the first one that tried to get in, so there must be a reason they do.

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    1. Wow, that is cool that it came right up to your camera. I've had one hover right in front of me when I was trying to get a feeder. It is magical to come eye to eye with them. I will ask Karen (the hummer expert) why they come inside and get back to you.

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    2. Thanks. Ask about drowned ants in the feeders too. I stopped putting out feeders because of the ants get to them within an hour. They climb anything to get that sugar water. I don't want to kill them though, so no poisons please. I even thought of putting sugar on the ground for the ants, but they still climb.

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  4. Wow! What a magical little bird and I love the sound of the Paw Paw tree x

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    1. They are really special little birds but also very territorial. I have numerous feeders up around the garden as well as nectar plants so that they share.

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  5. After reading the names of everything you bought, my first thought was you got some real tongue twisters! I enjoyed meeting you too. I love having this sale - it is a wonderful opportunity to bring to people some really unusual native plants, things you won't find in a store! Great pictures of the trillium and a wonderful sign that you have it naturally. Your new treasures will be right at home with her. I look forward to future pictures of them as these plants grow in your garden.

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    1. LOL! My husband thought that I was trying to attract rattlesnakes to our garden since I bought two plants with "rattlesnake" in the name. The plant sale was fabulous. Had a great time shopping and will absolutely be back!

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  6. A lot of great firsts! I am especially impressed by the Trillium, what a lovely flower!

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    1. Trillium are a bit of magic in the woods! To find it growing naturally was beyond thrilling!

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  7. The trillium is just gorgeous! And how fun to meet another blogger! I'm so glad you got the hummingbird out safely. A very full and fun day!

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    1. Oh me too! I would have been devastated otherwise! When my husband opened his hands I was prepare to snap a very quick photo before it flew away but she sat there for about 15 seconds before she flew off and I was a little concerned. She was fine, just a little cautious.

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  8. How wonderful you got to meet Ellen...her blog is wonderful. I have wanted to make it to our areas Native Plant sale but I always have to work and the dates never work out....but next year I will be there. Love adding more natives and you have some great ones. And that trillium is a treat.

    What a sweet hummer to visit but she definitely was in a foreign country.

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    1. I had been wanting the go the the Native Plant sale for two years now and finally made it this year. It was worth it. If your native plants sales are like ours I recommend getting there early. Once the gates open it is a mad dash to grab plants! Native plant enthusiast are the most passionate gardeners I know.

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  9. That's the most interesting trillium bloom I think I've ever seen. Pretty colour and very curly petals. Love native plant sales, how fortunate to find one close to you.

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    1. I was captivated by it too. I took so many photos of it. It is amazing how this gorgeous flower just blooms quietly in the woods all by itself.

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  10. Oh my goodness! That is one spectacular day! Where do I start to comment? You mention so many of my favorite things. :) Starting with Bloodroot--I checked the garden today to see if it was emerging because I'm so excited to see it. Not yet ... Regarding the hummingbird: Wow! I've held them on my finger to feed before, but never in the palm of the hand. Glad that little sweetie is OK! Great rescue job!

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  11. Poor little Hummer. We have never had a Hummer visit us in the house but have had several little wrens come in by accident. We do not leave our doors open too long as our kittys are inside only. We don't need them sneaking out on us thus the quickly shut doors. One Wren came in through the chimney and one was on the front door garland and when the door was open, it flew inside. Ha, those silly birds. Love em though! I cannot believe you have only met one blogger in your many years of blogging. We are in the Augusta area which is close so you should come by to see us sometime. We would love to have your see our woods and gardens....

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  12. That trillium is just gorgeous! ! You're so lucky to have that growing wild in your yard.

    I'll have to check out the blog you recommended.

    Good to hear you were able to round up the hummingbird and set her free again. We've never had one come in the house but I have had one ask for a bath when I was watering the plants.

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  13. Ah yes, isn't it great to have days like that. Very interesting names for some of those plants ! And a gorgeous trillium. I expect ours to be out and blooming in another couple of weeks - looking forward to getting out there hunting for more signs of spring.

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  14. I so enjoyed this post because it reminds me of many of my special days and special moments and special encounters. I just love your hummingbird encounter...what a sweet experience. I am glad it all worked out for the best.

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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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