Thursday, October 30, 2014

Blooms Around The House

 Cattleya bowringiana variety coerulea 'Blue Angel' HCC/AOS.  This is a "blue" variety of the normally lavender species (see below), caused by a rare genetic mutation.

 Cattleya guttata variety coerulea

 Cattleya bowringiana (tipo)

 Hoya australis.  This one is super fragrant at night!

 Laelia pumila (sib cross)

Paphiopedilum henryanum 

 Paphiopedilum sukhakulii variety album.  The is an albino variety of this normally black spotted species!

Phalaenopsis Ox Happy Girl 'Sweetheart'

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Hummingbird Wars!

Allen's and Anna's Hummingbirds fighting over a prime perch.  The Allen's hummingbirds are a little smaller than the Anna's Hummingbirds but make up for it by being extra feisty!

 Allen's hummingbird rushing off to chase another hummingbird, while defending it's perch.

 Allen's hummingbird chasing an Anna's hummingbird.

Anna's hummingbird defending itself from the little Allen's hummingbird (see the talons up above).

Monday, October 06, 2014

The Blue Angels MCAS Miramar Airshow

There's something about military aircraft thundering by that never fails to impress me.  These are F/A-18 Hornets.  Perhaps it is the sheer speed and power of these planes or perhaps it is their ability to do amazing maneuvers in mid-air (including flying straight up and flying upside down!). Whatever the reason, these guys are pretty doggone amazing!

American Orchid Society Award at the San Diego International Orchid Fair

Zygopetalum New Era 'Windflower' HCC/AOS

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Hummer of the Day!

Male Anna's Hummingbird, Calypte anna, in flight.

The Tobacco Hornworm - Manduca sexta

Tobacco Hornworm, Manduca sexta, feeding on tomato leaves.  The tobacco hornworm feeds on plants in the family Solanaceae, including tobacco, tomatoes and plants in the morning glory genus, Datura.  The tobacco hornworm is apparently able to isolate and store Nicotine ingested from its tobacco host (note that tomatoes also contain a nicotine alkaloid called tomatine) and excretes Nicotine, which is toxic to most animals, as a deterrent to predation.  The Tobacco hornworn may be distinguished from the Tomato Hornworn via the white diagonal stripes and red horn on the Tobacco hornworm versus the V-Shaped white markings and black horn on the Tomato hornworm.  This particular worm stripped a 3 foot tall tomato plant nearly bare of leaves in about a weeks time, before I finally found him holding tightly to a stem.