Saturday, June 29, 2013

Heliconia schiedeana

Heliconia schiedeana, in tight bud, blooming in the back yard.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Moon Shot

A shot of tonight's moon.  I was really fascinated by the craters that are most visible on the edges of the lit portion of the moon where you can see the shadows cast by the crater walls.  I also wondered what made those cool star burst patterns.  Apparently, both the craters and the large star patterns are caused when an asteroid or meteor hits the surface of the moon.  The star patterns are caused by ejecta, rock debris thrown up and out of the crater during the asteroid or meteor impact event.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Cacti Blooming Everywhere!

The cacti are blooming in the back yard in full force, highlighting the end of Spring and the start of the hot Southern California Summer.

 Echinopsis Nancy Scott
 Echinopsis rubispinus
 Echinopsis Sorceress
 Echinopsis Syncopation
 Epiphyllum Romantic Night
 Epiphyllum Telstar
Trichocereus hybrid

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Echinopsis oxygona and Echinopsis oxygona alba

The cacti have been blooming for the last month.  That includes Echinopsis, Tricocereus, Echinocereus and Epiphyllums as well as a Cereus repandus (Peruvian Apple Cactus).  Here's some pictures of Echinopsis oxygona from the back patio.

Echinopsis oxygona blooming on the back patio.

Echinopsis oxygona variety alba blooming on the back patio next to its normally colored cousin above.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Catasetum cernuum

Catasetum cernuum.  These are native to Trinidad, Venezuela, and Brazil and grow in hot forests from around 500 -5000 ft.  This one really reminded me of an octopus for some odd reason.  I really like the camo-coloring and think it might be a fun source of spotted greens for hybridizing.

Anna's Hummingbird Chicks

2 baby hummingbirds (Anna's probably) on a nest of spider webs, lichens and dried grass.  They've feathered out and will leave the nest soon.  I got there just in time to snap a picture!  Another week and they'll probably both be off on their own.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Pacific Sardines

Pacific Sardines, Sardinops sagax, swimming in a tight ball.  This sardine species is found as far South as Chile and on up the Eastern Pacific to Alaska.  They are known to breed off of the Southern California coast peaking in April and May.  Sardines are primarily plankton feeders, largely feeding upon small copepods and crustaceans (probably the source of the alpha omega oils that concentrate in the sardines).  In turn, sardines are a significant food source for a broad variety of birds, mammals and fish.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

San Diego AOS Judging Results for June, 2013

 C Latona 'Nancy Ruth' CCE 92pts

 C Latona 'Nancy Ruth' HCC 79pts

 Cyrtocidium Steve Beckendorf 'Ushi' AM 83pts

 Epy Serena O'Neill 'Royal Basin Surprise' AM 83pts

 Laelia pfisteri 'Christa' HCC 78pts

 Paph Julius 'Sunset Valley Orchids' AM 84pts

 Sedirea japonica 'Bell Orchidea' CCM 83pts

Sedirea japonica 'Bell Orchidea' CCM 83pts

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Hooded Oriole nest and chick

Hooded Oriole (Icterus cucullatus) nest and chick.  The orioles nest in the banana tree every Spring, carefully weaving grass fibers through holes punched through the leaf.  The leaf is strong enough to hold up the nest and chick but too flimsy for a predator such as a raven to perch upon.  This chick was just starting to show a little yellow coloration and will probably be up and out of the nest soon.

Sunday, June 02, 2013

Raku Art: Nine Holes

 Nine Holes, a Raku Porcelain Ceramic art piece by Pierre Bounaud.  This piece is on display at the Front Porch Gallery in Carlsbad, California.

Pierre-Yves Bounaud, the Artist, posing by his two pieces during today's opening at the Front Porch Gallery.

Red Daylily

Red Daylily blooming in the back yard.  I had a tag in there somewhere but...hey, it's pretty, name or not.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Hooded Orioles

The hooded orioles are back, nesting in the banana tree as always.  I heard the chicks peeping as I walked by the banana tree but it took me a few moments to figure out that the source of the sound was the banana tree leaf!  I am hoping that the ravens do not find them this year as the ravens raid the Spring nests on a regular basis.  Still, a nest woven underneath a banana tree leaf ought to give them some pause.