Black Swallowtail and Apiaceae

Top Photo: Black swallowtail caterpillar on carrot. Along with the monarch butterfly caterpillar, the black swallowtail is one of the most familiar butterfly caterpillars. Anyone who has grown carrots, parsley, fennel, or any other plant in the Apiaceae family of plants has, at one time or another, had the black, yellow, and green caterpillars happily devouring the plants before their eyes. Many people, myself included, plant parsley or fennel specifically to attract the butterflies and watch them go through theirRead more

New and Old Things Emerging

Top Photo: Tiny yellow flower of Mexican Sour Gherkin Cucumber. The fruit of the Mexican Sour Gherkin Cucumber is about an inch long. They look more like tiny watermelons but have the taste of a cucumber with a lemony tang. These vines grow in many locations throughout our campus, wherever they’re not supposed to grow. I intended to plant this vegetable in my own personal garden at home this year but was sidetracked by other matters. I’ll make sure toRead more

Black Swallowtail

Black Swallowtail Butterflies lay their eggs on parsley, fennel, Queen Anne’s Lace, and other plants in the carrot family. To see the adult butterfly, click here, but don’t forget to come back. Plant some parsley in a pot on your back porch and watch the fun!Read more

Summer Starts to Buzz

The First-of-the-Year Great Blue Skimmer appeared on the 27th of June, perhaps adding to the confusion of novice oders (oders = dragonfly watchers). There are now 3 species of dragonfly cruising the Wetlands in which the mature males are overall blue in coloration. They differ in size as well as in several less obvious characteristics, but to the beginner it can be a tad confusing to sort them out, especially if they’re not perched next to one another. While leadingRead more