Moths, Butterflies, and Caterpillars

October 20, 2013

The freezing weather is coming this week, but there is still a lot of life in the backyard.

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Kale flowers and cabbage white butterfly.  I always called this a cabbage moth until I looked it up now online and see that it is really a butterfly.  The caterpillars like cabbage, so it makes sense, since I have so many brassica plants in the garden.

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Virginia ctenucha moth on spice bush.  This is a day-flying moth and the caterpillars eat grass.  That makes sense since I have several clumps of switch grass nearby.  You cannot see the body of the moth, but it is dark blue.

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Woolly bear caterpillar.  I understand that these caterpillars actually freeze during the winter.  Eventually it will become an Isabella tiger moth.

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Painted lady butterfly on yellow zinnia.  I have fewer zinnias and mums in the yard this year, which may be why I have fewer butterflies.

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Some of the fennel flowers have turned to seed now.  I ate a few of them yesterday and the licorice flavor is strong.  I ended up spitting them out.  Maybe I will just try one seed at a time next time.  No wonder I have so many volunteer fennel plants in the yard.

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Rozanne geranium after the rain.

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There are still plenty of flowers on the Russian sage.  I saw the bees buzzing around this plant this morning.

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Dusty miller is an annual that I planted last year and it survived through the mild winter.  It is looking pretty healthy, but I wonder if it will survive another winter.

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Leaves of viburnum dentatum – ‘blue muffin.’

Cooking adventure:  My friend teased me about making kale cake, but seriously we have a lot of kale that we need to be creative with.  So yesterday we blanched a batch of kale and froze it in two freezer bags.  Hopefully having it picked, washed, and cut up will make it easy to add to whatever we are cooking this winter.

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11 Responses to “Moths, Butterflies, and Caterpillars”

  1. Merindy made a good soup with kale recently: brown some sausage and set aside, then sauté onions & garlic, brown potatoes, add vegetable broth to boil, add kale and boil 20 min, add white beans and pre-browned sausage, cook till kale is done. =-)

  2. pbmgarden said

    In NC there is a festival dedicated to the folklore of woolly bear weather predictions–something to do with how wide/narrow the brown middle section is. I like your Rozanne geranium.

  3. osolynden said

    Wonderful photos. I enjoyed them. We had the killing freeze a week ago here at a high elevation 30 minutes from Santa Fe NM.

  4. Annette said

    Very enjoyable your moths and butterflies. Lots of cabbage white around here too, swirling about Verbena bonariensis and making me worry about my cabbage… 😉

  5. bittster said

    There still is a lot going on over there! I would have never guessed that Virginia tcnucha was actually a moth… I think I’ve seen them around here. Interesting

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