Monarchs in the Gardens

August 29th, 2013

Yesterday I found several Monarch Butterflies nectaring on the Joe-pye Weed that's blooming in the hedge behind the condo.

Monarch on Joe-pye Weed 8-28-13 Read the rest of this entry »

Native Thistles

August 22nd, 2013

I want to introduce you to some misunderstood plants.

Most of us think of thistles as weeds - most of the ones we see along roadsides and field edges are not native and very aggressive.   But there are several native thistles that are well behaved, and will even grow well in gardens.  I've planted three species of native thistles in our prairie meadow.  One of them is blooming right now. Read the rest of this entry »

Prairie Meadow Update – August 22, 2013

August 22nd, 2013

If you haven't checked on it lately, the prairie meadow is blooming and beautiful.   Here are a few photos from earlier this week. Read the rest of this entry »

Cooper’s Hawk

August 20th, 2013

A Hawk - which I think is a young Cooper's Hawk - landed on our balcony this afternoon.  It sat and looked around for about 5 minutes, staring in at me at my desk,  and then flew away.

Thanks to Clay Christensen for this ID.

8-20-13 red tailed hawk 1 Read the rest of this entry »

Fall Clearing in the Prairie Meadow

November 27th, 2012

If you go down to look at the prairie garden, don't be surprised to see that the prairie plants are gone!   The plants have grown so tall and thick that, last spring, the new growth had to struggle to get through last year's stalks.  So I decided that, this year, it would be a good idea to cut and remove some of that thick growth. Read the rest of this entry »

Native Landscaping

July 13th, 2012

This is a post about my philosophy of landscaping.  In the last few years, I've worked with a few groups of folks on choosing plants for the gardens around our building.  Everyone has different tastes, and different ideas about what our landscape should look like.  I've heard both praise and criticisms of decisions that were made, and questions about why certain plants were chosen,  so I thought I would tell you the ideas behind my choices. Read the rest of this entry »

Insects in the Gardens – July 2012

July 10th, 2012

I walked in the gardens today, looking for butterflies, and found lots of both butterflies and dragonflies.  The prairie and the wetland garden have a few blooming flowers, and even more that are just getting ready to open. Read the rest of this entry »

Moths and Butterflies in the Gardens

May 10th, 2012


I did my first mothing for this year on Monday night.  I didn't see many moths - it's still cool at night, and still very early in the year for many species.  But I did see a few interesting ones. Read the rest of this entry »

Moths – Coffman Lecture

November 3rd, 2011

I gave a talk on Tuesday, November 1, 2011 about my project to learn more about moths - and especially about the moths that come to our farm in Buffalo County, Wisconsin.  Here are photos of some of the people at the talk, and some of the moths and caterpillars that I showed them. Read the rest of this entry »

Turkeys at 1666

October 7th, 2011

There has been a flock of Wild Turkeys wandering around the grounds behind 1666 lately.  These photos were taken on October 5. Read the rest of this entry »