So folks, it’s that time of the year–or soon will be. We are getting lots of rain from regular weather, as well as Hurricane Florence pushing some up this way, so our trees and hillsides aren’t drying out. But have you noticed it’s dark by 7:30 these days? Fall equinox is this Saturday, at 9:54 pm. (How do you humans figure these things out?) The plants know the daylight hours are waning and will start to pull in their sugars. This makes the leaves pretty, and you humans like to touch them. Except theres one that shouldn’t be touched…
Yep, that’s the very pretty fall variation of poison ivy. The leaves are drying so don’t have as much natural oil as it does in the spring–the stuff that causes itchiness–but it has enough.
After Ol’ Wally’s dramatic tale from yesterday, I decided the blog needed an uplifting moment–and butterflies seem to still fit that idea. No spicebush swallowtails or monarchs died during the time Hickory and I visited these flowers!
But we did find one juvenile hiding!
“As he well should!” Hickory chittered. “Birds. If you can’t trust them to stay out of your sunflower seeds, then when can you trust them?”
Keep up with your watering! Caterpillars are still munching away on your plants, like this monarch caterpillar. He might have gotten a bit lost in an azalea–likely looking for a place to hang his chrysalis–but you can see he just came from the milkweed leaves beyond.