I haven't posted in several months. I've been sick with the flu - still have a lingering cough - and pretty much been hibernating.
We really haven't had much winter here, one or two? nights of barely freezing temps - lows about 31 or 32 degrees, I think - and it's been very mild at other times. A few days when it was especially humid, I turned on the AC just long enough to make the air more comfortable. My orange and satsuma trees are looking grand, no worries about damage!
I finally got out and did some yard work today. I saw a pipevine swallowtail and a red admiral. The other day, I saw a few cloudless sulphurs and a sleepy orange. I was surprised to see the pipevine swallowtail, I assume the very warm weather caused it to emerge this soon. My chrysalids are in a butterfly cage on my front porch, fortunately, none of them have emerged yet.
The wild blueberries, serviceberries, red maples, winter honeysuckle, and various weeds are blooming. At this rate, all the plants will be putting out new growth very soon.
I ordered a few plants from Mail Order Natives, two spicebushes (I'm going to try them again) a wafer ash, and a tulip poplar. I'll grow these in containers all year then plant them out next fall or winter.
I got a picture of the pipevine swallowtail, but it was bad, because he wouldn't let me get close enough. The red admiral - tattered and faded - was more cooperative -
Here's looking forward to the upcoming butterfly season!