Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Birds and Plants

In the last few days birds have flown in from all over the world!

The Great Tit, Goldfinch, and Chaffinch winged on in from the Emma Bridgewater factory at Stock-on-Trent in England. I was lucky enough to see all three birds on last summer's holiday in England.  Nice to commemorate the pretty birds with these lovely mugs.

My mother gifted me with this lovely print of a male Evening Grosbeak.
It is by local artist Erika Beyer. She does lovely botanical illustrations and has recently branched into birds.  Here website is here - take a look!

I think he's quite pleased with the portrait, don't you?

And if that weren't enough, the mail brought an amazing RAK to yours truly. 

Lee of Notes from Under the Mountain gifted me with a lovely letter, a card, and a meticulously stitched ornament.  All the items centered around the theme of New Zealand's Bellbird. Coming all the way from New Zealand was this charming collection of Bellbirds.  

Bellbirds are present on both the north and south islands of New Zealand. They eat fruit and insects.  They sound similar to hummingbirds as they have a whirring flight.  Bellbirds are also nectar eaters, and so are important pollinators for New Zealand's native plants and trees.  The males are a lovely olive-green with a purple head.  Bellbirds are best known for their musical bell notes at dawn and dusk.  You can listen here.   

Here's a close-up of Lee's remarkable ornament. 
It is very sumptuous with olive cording and dark green fabric.  The bird's beak, eye, and foot are precisely detailed. I think Lee must have stitched it on an exceptionally high count of linen. It is amazing and I am so pleased to be the recipient of such bounty!

Now let's head over to An Oregon Cottage and join in the fun at the Tuesday Garden Party

I spent the holiday weekend dog-sitting and while out walking the dog a couple of front yards caught my eye.
This is the first - unabashedly a riot of color. 

The color continued in the beds along the street's edge.

House #2 had more of a Cottage Garden look to it. 

But still lots of color.

When I returned home, this is what greeted me.
Dirt strewn all about. 

While the birds sometimes get in the pots, I'm thinking chipmunks.
The test will be if in a couple of weeks there are sunflowers sprouting as shown here.  

Solomon  says he'd be more than happy to catch the villains for me.

My sister's Morning Glorys have begun to bloom.

And we have two different kinds of Poppies in bloom.
This is Lauren Springer Grape.

And this bright frilly red one tagged along with Lauren as an 'extra'.

My sun-worshipers are loving our heat. 

My Moss Roses (portulaca) will explode in bloom any day now.

The Black and Blue Salvia continues to send up more and more bloom spikes.

And this Agastache is covered in blooms.

Excuse the terrible photo it does not do the plant justice.
This is Penstemon pinifolius "Mersea Yellow'. Its a native Penstemon. It has a small mounding habit with very pretty fine leaves (pine-like thus the Latin name) and beautiful yellow flowers.  I got mine at Xera Plants in Portland.

Look at what is ahead!

TueJul 8

Partly Cloudy
Partly Cloudy

WedJul 9


ThuJul 10


FriJul 11

Mostly Sunny
Mostly Sunny

SatJul 12


SunJul 13


MonJul 14

Mostly Sunny
Mostly Sunny

TueJul 15

Partly Cloudy
Partly Cloudy

WedJul 16

That's it for this week.  With temperatures in the 90's for the next several days I'll be watering, watering, and watering some more!  

One year ago today Mom and I spent a second day exploring Edinburgh, Scotland.


Barb Cvetnic said...

Love those mugs and the Grosbeak print. Your flowers look lovely and I think I'll do some moss roses in a big container as well

Annette-California said...

Gorgeous stitched Bell bird ornament and lovely gifts from Lee. The bird mugs are beautiful. Love all the pretty photos. love Annette

cucki said...

Beautiful mugs..so pretty...
Beautiful photos xxx

Vickie said...

ooOoo! Love Lee's gift! She is amazing.
Those poppies are awesome! Love!!
Oh my! Solomon does look serious and ready. ;)

Maggee said...

Love those mugs for your collection! And what a great RAK from New Zealand! How nice of Lee! Thanks for sharing!

Margaret said...

Love the RAK and that lovely painting too. So realistic! The morning glories and poppies are beautiful! Love EB!

Mindy said...

Wowee, those front yards on your walk are so pretty. And I LOVE your poppies. I swiped some seed pods that I sprinkled in the parking strip today, I hope they come up next year.
I was so happy when I thought my black and blue was coming back this spring, but it turned out to be bee balm. Hmpf. Yours is gorgeous!
Love the kitty. :)

Barb said...

Loved the bird mugs and photos of the real guys! Such beautiful poppies! I HATE a weather forecast like that. I'm afraid we are pretty close to you in the forecast. I thought today was too hot and the weather lady said if you think today is warm, you haven't seen anything! UG!!!!

Brigitte said...

I love the bird mugs, they are very beautiful. And all that abundance of flowers in your post, absolutely stunning.
Contrarily to you we are overflowing with rain but it was much needed. People are already complaining about the summer weather because we've had more rainy than sunny days so far. But it's great like that, I think.

LaNelle said...

You are one lucky receiver of such beautiful treasures but especially the ornament it is gorgeous! Love your new print as well they are a favorite of mine....

Melanie said...

Oooo, that is a great print. So dynamic. (And so much like your photo below it!) Such a wonderful RAK as well. Stunning work on the ornament. Bless her and her eyes for such fine work. That linen is microscopic!