I know that in many parts of the country spring is happening, with new sprouts shooting out of the ground, greenness, crocuses, daffodils, and blooming trees. If I lived in a colder climate I would think that southern Arizona had already begun spring, way ahead of other places. But as I have walked around this place I see that new shoots of greenery are just beginning to come forth here as well.
Just outside my door is a large mesquite tree that just a few days ago had no sign of green. Today the leaves have burst forth. After the terribly cold weather here in January and February I thought the plants would have a very hard time coming back to life. But today as I walked in the visitor center garden I saw blooms aplenty . The garden is a charming place to sit and be still, and listen to the birds and feel the breeze. It is planted after the mission traditional gardens from centuries ago. And it is always a joy to visit.
In that garden are roses, violets, quince and pear, orange and apricot, and pomegranate trees. They all made it through the winter, and have produced hundreds, even thousands, of blooms. So today I’m posting photos of some of my spring discoveries as I’ve walked in the garden the past couple of weeks.
One of my favorite delights was seeing a sphinx moth. I didn’t know what it was at first, so I inquired – a cross between a bee and a hummingbird, it seemed! As I browsed for information online it seems that these are call ‘hummingbird moths’. I didn’t get a photo of it, and it seems that most online images are copyrighted, so if you want to know more, you’ll have to do some research.
Another part of spring arriving is the number of birds that have come to cheer up the mornings. Of special interest to birders is the vermilion flycatcher. There are several pairs here right now. I don’ t know a lot of the birds, but there are several kinds of sparrows, cardinals, phainopepla, black phoebe, doves, finches, orioles and hummingbirds. A couple of days ago I saw two turkey vultures land in a nearby tree. The Santa Cruz river is less than half a mile from here so this is a place where lot of birds like to come.
It is so easy to love this setting!!!