Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Box of Goodies

This afternoon I found a rectangular shaped box on my doorstep. It looked like someone had sat on the thing, even though the word "Fragile" was scrolled across the side. Oh well. I opened it up and found plants that I'd ordered. Yay!

In this particular box were two Spice Bushes, Lindera benzoin, and a Goldenrod, (I'll find out the species at a later date.) Spice Bushes have two sexes and only the female plants produce berries but both are host to a fascination butterfly, the Spicebush Swallowtail, Papilio troilus. The caterpillar actually mimics a snake, right down to retractable red antenna that flicker like a snake does with it's tongue to taste the air.

Another great caterpillar to look out for on these plants is the Promethea Moth, Callosamia promethea. Though it is one of our Giant Silk Moths it's not the biggest. Still worth attracting though it is on the decline. A parasite introduced to deal with Gypsy Moths has taken a liking to this species unfortunate.

I'll post back with more plants I get in the mail. Everything should arrive by Friday and I hope to get them all in the ground by winter.