As was reported in the news last week, Florida's fine folks braced themselves (ourselves, I should say) for the wrath of Tropical Storm Isaac; hurricane shutters were pulled, outdoor furniture was relocated to the refuge of indoors, and I dismantled the various planters I've constructed in our building's front yard so I could stash the plants in our front entryway. Among the plants were some pots of milkweed, which are vociferously eaten by the hordes of Monarch caterpillars living on them. Seriously, there are always so many caterpillars on them, I've never seen one plant sprout a single flower.
The storm passed with just some rain, so I moved everything back outside again. Time marched on. Then that brings us to today, much to my delight, which is the day another round of butterflies has hatched. I spotted three outside, including this lady drying her wings:
It's all very exciting. Hello, ma'am. Best of luck to you on your travels and subsequent repopulating of your almost-endangered species.
I walked back inside, and what's this? Apparently a caterpillar crawled off one of the plants during the hurricane interlude and made a cocoon somewhere in the entryway--which means she hatched right there.
I might have gasped and oooed and ahhed a little bit but no one was there to hear it so I wasn't embarrassed about my lapse in masculinity. I scooped her onto my phone and tossed her out the door. She flew away, at first a little herkily-jerkily but then she got the hang of it, sort of like the buttefly version of throwing a kid into the deep end of the pool and calling it swimming lessons.
I say "she," btw, because the orange/black ones are female. Males are more orange.
Am I such a nerd that I am blogging about butterflies? I guess so. I'm pretty proud of myself for adding a few more butterflies to the world, thanks to my plants. Next: I'm going to get some torchwood plants, so I can attract Swallowtails. Do you think Mariah Carey will come visit me and see my yard?