We’ve been excited to once again have migrating rose-breasted grosbeaks (Pheucticus ludovicianus) in the backyard. These three males seemed quite comfortable feeding among the other birds, including two cardinals.
Spring has finally arrived in Kentucky, and instead of ring-around-the-rosy we have a ring of golden ragwort (Senecio obovatus) around our pin oak tree (Quercus palustris). Last spring I planted several plants in the mulched area around the tree and I’ve been surprised at how quickly they filled the entire area.
I was primarily interested in the dark-green basal leaves that provide an attractive evergreen ground cover. However, the bright golden blossoms of spring are certainly an added bonus. I will continue to use golden ragwort as a year-round ground cover that does especially well in dry shade. However, given its tendency to spread, I will be cautious about planting it with other small plants.
At close range, I find the blossoms quite beautiful and think they deserve a nicer-sounding name than ragwort.
When it has finished blooming and begins to look scraggly, I will cut off the flower stalks and continue to enjoy it as a ground cover. Then next spring I’ll look forward to seeing the green turn to gold again.
Then sun brought resurrection
and two honey bees. Continue reading
Sap is dripping from our large silver maple tree (Acer saccharinum) during the day and freezing as icicles on cold nights. I see this as a sign of spring.
When people think of northern cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis) they often visualize the brilliant red males. The female is not nearly as showy, and is easily overlooked. Nevertheless, I think she is quite beautiful, with shades of red in her feathers, bright red ‘eyebrows’, and a red beak outlined in black.