Friday, June 1
This afternoon, the sun emerged after a brief rain so I decided to go out and take a few pictures in the yard. I focused first on the lovely combination of dark blue Siberian iris and acid-green alchemilla mollis, then started to work my way back toward the newly opened peony blooms.
While trying to catch some good backlighting on several baptisia, I noticed that a bird had flown by awfully close. It was a blue jay, and it came back for another pass--actually mussing up my hair this time--just as my boyfriend pulled into the driveway. The first near-miss was obviously not a mistake.
I hurried back toward an apparently more "neutral" area of the yard as he got out of the car and explained what was going on. "I'm getting dive bombed by a blue jay! Do you see anything back here? A nest, anything?" I asked.
Neither of us could pick out anything that looked out of place. "Well, let's see if it happens again. Watch your feet," he cautioned as we cautiously moved toward the back of the lot again.
Sure enough, the dive bombing resumed as soon as I got to the end of the baptisia bed. Brian commented that there were actually TWO blue jays diving at me, which explained how they were coming back around so quickly. I was watching my feet as directed when I saw something small and grey plop onto the unmulched ground from the lowest branch of the espaliered pear. "Look, there's a baby!"
I didn't want to stress the new parents or the little one out any more than I already had, and I certainly had had enough of their protective campaign... but I couldn't resist taking a minute to snap a photo before I scooted out of there. If you click the picture to enlarge it, you can see the baby to the left of the tree trunk, just behind the first clump of dianthus.
We watched from a safe distance as the baby hopped off, stretching his wings under the watchful eyes of the parents. Since they had successfully protected their baby from the big scary human interlopers, they were now free to scavenge more food. We watched them feed the baby a few times as it hopped along, but didn't get to see it actually fly...
Speaking of flying, it's past the time we had wanted to get on the road ourselves. We are heading down to OU to see my wonderful sister-in-law graduate from medical school. (Congratulations, Amanda!) It seems to be a weekend of new beginnings all around. I hope that all of my fellow gardeners make a few fun discoveries out in their own gardens this weekend!