For the first time ever I have Pipevine Swallowtail eggs in my backyard!!!!!!!!! I have waited forever for this moment!!!!!! I hope they like it here!!
The eggs are the rusty-gold blurry dots near the end of the Aristolochia Californica vine. They are generally laid in groups. Most butterflies lay their eggs one at a time, the the Pipevine Swallowtail lays its eggs in groups.
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Below is a picture of a Pipevine Swallowtail. This butterfly was in my backyard in Berkeley, California yesterday. I have had pipevine, Aristolochia Californica, for more than ten years, but I have never seen the associated butterfly or any caterpillars on the plant. I am very excited about this long-awaited butterfly showing up in my backyard. I have heard that the wilder areas nearby are very dry because all of the rains were so early this year. As a consequence, the butterflies are visiting watered gardens to find lush hostplants. I have no way of testing this, but it seems like a plausible explanation. I am hoping that I find eggs soon.
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Monday, May 13, 2013
Sunday, May 12, 2013
Friday, May 10, 2013
Thursday, May 9, 2013
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
However, one of the first houses I looked at had a very unusual front yard with weedy grasses being the main plants. I think it was oats and rye. Great start to a butterfly garden! I told the homeowner that skippers like the lay their eggs on grasses. He said he like the grass idea, but that the grasses were dying back. I suggested Ehrharta as a great alternative. It is very green and grows all year long.
Some people may think that suggesting a weed is a bad idea. But skippers love Ehrharta! It is a great host plant! Easy, low maintenance. The perfect grass for shady places.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
The tree is native to Central and South America. It does well in Southern California, judging by this specimen. But I have never seen one in the Bay Area, so I guess it is too cold here.
Thursday, May 2, 2013
Sorry about the lousy picture. I need a better camera.