The burdock flowers also draw a crowd of bees; these ones are European honey bees.
Another reason I like burdock is that it supports a lot of insects. A week ago, I noticed that seemingly overnight, the undersides of the flower clusters had been swarmed by hundreds of aphids. I pulled out the hose and blasted a bunch of them off with a few quick squirts, but that only thins them out, it never gets ’em all, so I was very pleased to find a couple of ladybugs crawling around on it the next day. Although they’re cute, I know they’re fiends for aphids.
And even better, by the end of the week I was seeing ladybug larvae crawling around, clearing out the lingering aphids. A few days later, I can no longer find any aphids at all.
I’ve heard people dismiss burdock as a nuisance weed, and I’m sure there are situations in which it is unwanted, but I love its odd little flowers, and since I’m growing it in a container, the burrs really aren’t a problem.
You can see why one of the common names for dianthus flowers is “pinks” — some of them are such a hot pink my phone camera doesn’t know what to do with it.
Our little rose bush is going full blast.
The little rose bush a neighbor donated to the garden last year has just bloomed for the first time this season.
Nature’s first green is gold.
Autumn color in the big city as the tiny trees growing in the fence planters prepare for winter.
I had initially thought that silver ragwort (aka “Dusty Miller”) was an annual, but it turns out to be winter hardy, and several of the ones I planted last year survived our gentle winter and have continued to provide an unusual bit of contrast in the garden this season.