The Baccharis sarothroides that we planted to anchor the slopes around the house bloom every year at this time, and are covered in nectar-lovers. Being an especially warm day, they were out in force.
Honey bees are the most numerous, but tarantula hawks of at least three species are visiting also. Pepsis thisbe seemed to be the most common visitor to the milkweed earlier in the season. But now Pepsis mildei, often in groups of females, and Pepsis chrysothemis with its bright red wings are showing up too.
|SO much nectar (and so little time)!|
Later in the afternoon, I paid a quick visit to Paso Picacho campground and vicinity in the state park (Cuyamaca Rancho State Park, to be precise).
|Honey Bees were the most common visitors to some of the last "fresh" Ericameria parishii, near the beginning of the Stonewall Peak trail. I saw a Pepsis mildei female and what appeared to be Pepsis thisbe on the same bush also.|
|A dinner-plate-sized shelf fungus, seemingly growing out of the ground. There were dead, burned tree stumps in the area though (some with more of this fungus), so I suspect there was some wood under this big specimen. Stonewall Peak trail.|
|Snowberry is "berrying". Azalea Glen trail.|
|Signs of cooler times to come soon.|
|What IS this?? (Answer at the end of the post)|
|An ultra-pubescent plant along the Azalea Glen trail. To be determined.|
|The fuzzy-leaved plant, with sunlight seeping through...|
|The mystery "mountain range" is the edge of an acorn cup!|