The star that burns most brightly in our garden recently is the Butterfly Weed (aka Pleurisy Root, Butterfly Milkweed). This not-so-common member of the milkweed family is said to attract Monarch butterflies.
So far this year the Monarchs haven’t paid much attention, but other insects have certainly noticed these blooms. The Musca domestica (housefly) looks its resplendent best against a backdrop of Butterfly weed.
Even where the flowers have little colour, it’s not hard to spot some flashes of orange. This dragonfly has flown across the road from the marsh to check out the arugula flowers, while bronze and brassy damselflies also flit around the garden.
Intense summer sun plus a small but very welcome shower sped this sunflower toward maturity. Just two days separates these photos, as yellow-green quickly turns to orange.
The dry heat of recent weeks had many things switching to the hues of fall. With lawns drying up and many flowers withered, some days it looked more like September than July. The burnt ochre of the garden ornaments below – fragmented memories of someone else’s long-ago Mexican vacation – fit right in.
Some flowers, of course, still ring out in defiantly different tones.
Borage (above) and white water lily (below) look cool even when the sun is directly overhead in a cloudless sky.
Yet the palette in our corner of the world is trending toward yellow, gold, and orange, as rudbeckia, sylphium, and a flaming lily, below, come into their glory.
Top photo: Buzz buzz (click here for larger view)