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Archive for September 19th, 2015

Sunflowers

A stray sunflower seed decided that the spot just outside the garden gate was perfect and gave Mary’s garden an attractive marker. It will eventually have a dozen blossoms, each one serving as a buffet for the local bumblebees:

Sunflower with bumblebee

Sunflower with bumblebee

Each bee makes several complete circuits of the florets, draining the nectar and collecting pollen as she goes:

Sunflower with bumblebee - detail

Sunflower with bumblebee – detail

Mary tucks the open gate inside the garden to avoid disturbing the pollinators, as wasps tend to have short fuses and multiple-strike stingers:

Sunflower with wasp

Sunflower with wasp

The bumblebee traveled clockwise and the wasp went counterclockwise, but I don’t know if that’s the general rule. I certainly won’t dispute their choices!

In a few weeks, long after the petals fall away, a myriad small birds will harvest the dried seeds…

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