Wednesday, September 14, 2011

September Blooms and Buckeyes



Most of my gardens are winding down--fall is approaching and all that is left are a few remaining annuals and a select group of fall blooming perennials...  The Common Buckeye (Junonia coenia), however, is showing its colors, pollinating the last of my flowers and laying eggs on the annual Snapdragons- that I purposely plant as their host plant.

The Common Buckeye is found throughout most of the United State with a northern migration during the late spring-early summer.  It doesn't overwinter in Missouri though, and it will soon begin its journey back to the southern states. It's easily identified by the large eyespots on the upper side of the wings (probably a defense mechanism to scare away predators).  The underside of the hindwing is tan during the summer and more of a rose color in the fall.  The female lays eggs on host plant leaves (including plants from the snapdragon, plantain and acanthus families).  For some reason this year, I have more Buckeye butterflies than usual--which is fine by me..  The caterpillars are finishing off the last of the Snapdragons in my garden and the butterflies are adding some much needed color to my fading flowers...

I really don't like this herb most of the year...  It's similar to the wild onions that I'm in a constant battle with-- it reseeds and spreads everywhere.  Now, however, I remember why I keep it... It booms in September! 

What a great shrub!  I purchased this flowering bush two years ago at the Master Gardener plant sale for $2--What a good investment...  It looks great throughout the summer, then explodes with blueish blooms in the fall.   

In July my Zinnias were at their peak of  "prettiness," now in September they're looking a little worn.  In fact, in the above photo I had to wait until this Buckeye landed on a bloom that would make a presentable picture...  I should pull them up, but I'll let them stay as long as the bees and butterflies remain....

Great-dependable perennial--it's bloomed all summer and keeps going...

This is supposedly an annual in my gardening zone (6)--it's a perennial in zones 8-10, but it must be happy where it's planted in my garden because it returns each year...  It also blooms all summer and seems to appear a deeper shade of blue/purple in the fall.

I was always told to plant Marigolds in the vegetable garden to deter pests. 
Is that just a gardening myth? 
I really don't care, I like how they look scattered among the herbs and vegetables...

Visit NatureFootstep for addional photography of winged wildlife. 
For more photos of September blooms, visit the sites: May Dreams Gardens, Fishtail Cottage and Tootsie Time... 



25 comments:

  1. You have lots of those buckeyes, we have lots of butterflies too but those buckeyes seem to be aloof. There are its relatives here though, maybe because we don't have snapdragons. That blue salvia is so beautiful but i haven't seen it here yet. We have the red.

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  2. What a great post and lovely photos... Larry

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  3. Hi Becks

    Fab pics again.

    I planted Marigolds and Calendula, scattered all throughout my veg too. I was told it attracts the good guys, hoverflies etc., that then eat the bad guys.

    It's a cruel garden...

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  4. I'm drooling on my keyboard at your beautiful flower and butterfly photos!! WOW!!!

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  5. How did you get a butterfly (Buckeye) in all your photos? Is he a friend of yours? Beautiful photography.... so bright and cheery!

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  6. Looks like a Buckeye's paradise!

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  7. I really like the spirea with the blue blooms (mine are reddish) and the zinnia with the buckeye on it; beautiful!
    -Karen

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  8. Lovely display and I love the butterflies too - favourite is the Zinnia - very pretty.
    Happy GBBD :)

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  9. Beautiful images.. your butterflies are so lovely.

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  10. Your garden and photos are beautiful! I can never catch a butterfly! What's your secret?!
    -Lynn

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  11. You captured the beauty of the buckeye so expertly! And among your garden blooms they shine along with your gorgeous flowers. Happy GBBD!

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  12. They look great! I really like how you got so many in one shot.

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  13. Wow! Love your Buckeyes and your garden! The Buckeyes seem to be having a good year. I had one visit me way up in Eastern Ontario where they are rare migrants. Right now, I have a lot of Monarchs.

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  14. Such a beautiful butterfly!
    I've never seen one like that here in Sweden!
    Lovely photos too!
    Greetings
    Pia

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  15. What a visual treat to have some many butterflies in a single shot. It must be wonderful to watch them fluttering around the flowers. I am also intrigued by your beans. I may keep them in mind for next year's vegetable patch.

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  16. Oh that butterfly is stunning! Amazing photos aswell! :)

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  17. So many butterflies--that means good luck for you! I love the shot with the three butterflies perched on the white Alliums. The Marigolds are sure attracting the beneficials! This is a lovely post!

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  18. A Garden can't go wrong with butterflies and flowers :) Beautiful post!

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  19. What a cheerful place your garden must be with all the butterflies about! I love the way garlic chive blooms photograph; they have such a delicate quality.

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  20. A most glorious series of lovely Common Buckeye/garden photographs! All so very exquisite. This year, we are seeing an especially large amount of buckeyes flitting around our property too. An absolute joy to visit your wonderful blog!

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  21. What a beautiful butterfly! He certainly deserved to be the center of attention! You captured him wonderfully!

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  22. It must take a lot of patience to catchy so many butterflies. Fantastic jobs.

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  23. Gode billeder.
    Hvor er Sommerfuglene smukke.

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  24. such a nice butterfly. And great shots of them. What a treat in your garden.

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