Thursday, May 22, 2008

Top 5 strangest things in our garden this week.

5. Now this is also one of my favorites! Black Hollyhocks! Yeah they finally bloomed and I love them. They are striking and weird and gigantic at 8-10 ft tall! Only took almost 2 yrs to see so enjoy! I am already planning where and how many more for the next couple of years.

4. Check out this brown fuzzy hairy caterpillar! I figured out from that it is the larva to a ....

Giant Leopard or Tiger Moth as seen on

I remember we had quite a few of these giant leopard November... here is the pic of one laying eggs on the side of my house on 11/04/07

3. Alligator Lizards! I thought this was a skink! but on closer look... it seems it is not. We do have skinks and blue belly lizards but I have never seen a lizard that big up on our house! This guy was huge at about 16 inches long. But all skinks and lizards are very welcome here!

more on Alligator lizards.

2. What the heck! Is it a spider? Is it like a potato bug? ugh! Whatever it was... it was crawling toward me while I was folding laundry....EWWWWW! But you can be relieved to know it wasn't squished. It was gently placed back into the garden.... for us to find again later I am sure.

Here is what we learned from

"The Solpugid is not an insect, it is an arachnid. It is related to spiders and scorpions, hence its common names Sun Spider or Wind Scorpion. In some places they are called Sand Puppies, but they are not related to dogs. Unlike Spiders and Scorpions, Solpugids do not have venom. They are harmless unless you are small enough to be considered food, in which case gram per gram, they might be the fiercest predators on the planet. We are lucky they don't weigh 150 pounds. They will eat anything they can catch, which is a benefit in the desert. "

1. Top strangest thing found in our garden this week!!!! AHHHHH!

Opossum with a huge long nose and huge long tail...eating out of Sadie's dog dish in the middle of the night. That thing was almost as big as our 16 lb cat Chamois! Now we know who made a huge den at the edge of our play yard. This seems to be an unusually fat Opossum, with a HUGE head! Must have been munching in Sadie's bowl for the past couple of years! Would that make it our pet? EWWWW!

This is one I found in the front yard on 5/26/07 wonder if it is the same one? Here it is in my hat... i was just too chicken to hold it in my hands. It was so cute when it was tiny!

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