Today, our nectarine had its first bloom #BloomScrolling A close-up of a pink nectarine blossom on a tree branch with buds and a bright blue sky in the background.

    Northern California is in full almond bloom. Our backyard fruit trees are on the precipice of blooming. The ceanothus in the front yard is starting to bloom and the manzanitas have been in full bloom for about a week now A road stretching towards the horizon lined with blooming almond trees on both sides under a blue sky.

    We sometimes spoil our resident scrub jays with sunflower heads loaded with seeds. A juvenile Western Scrubjay looks down at a seed-filled sunflower head that’s on the ground. It is framed by a gravel pathway and some dry grass. Gray down is still on the bird’s back.

    Gray Buckeye Butterfly today at the Sacramento Wildlife Refuge. #Fujifilm #GrayBuckeye #Butterfly Gray Buckeye butterfly among weeds with tinier yellow flowers. The butterfly has three eyes on each wing. It is orange, brown, gray and white with a fuzzy body.

    Some real dinosaur stuff happened today at Bay Front Park just south of SFO. This Great Blue Heron caught a gopher, paraded around with it for several minutes, then swallowed it whole. Then the heron proceeded to hunt some more. 😬A Great Blue Heron stands in a dry grassy area with yellow flowers. It has a gopher’s neck in its mouth and the entire gopher is hanging.

    Volunteer Sunflowers in the backyard. The scrub jays garden really well. I continue to be impressed with the new Fujifilm XApp for transferring photos from my X-T5. #Fujifilm #Sunflowers #BloomScrolling

    Two sun flowers, one at the bottom and nearby and one about 15 feet away. There’s vegetation surrounding the flowers and a weather station behind the forest Sunflower. The flowers are extremely yellow and well lit.A close up of a sunflower, brightly lit by the sun.

    Here is a Black-necked Stilt from the #SacramentoNationalWildlifeRefuge #BlackNeckedStilt #BirdsOfMastodon #Fujifilm
    A Black-necked Stilt bird is waking through a shallow brown pond. Small forbs surround the pond, including low laying purple flowers and then, further in the background, yellow flowers. The Black-necked Stilt has a all-white underside and all-black back and top of head. It has long legs and a long black beak.

    We visited the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge and it was busy with all sorts of creatures. Gray Buckeye butterflies, American Avocets, Lesser Goldfinches, dragonflies and more.  A brown butterfly with patches of orange and black eyes near the top edge of its wings. The butterfly is surrounded by green to brown grass.An American Avocet has a brown head and neck with black wings and a white underside. It’s stepping through a pond and beyond it is a floor of purple and then yellow flowers.A Lesser Goldfinch (we think) seems to be using gymnastics to collect grassy nesting material. It is upside down on a stand of grass or a slender branch. It has a beak full of small grassy material.A dragonfly hovers in midair amongst bokeh of grass. It has a slight blue iridescence and looks to be about to fly downward.

    I neglected to post that our cultivated native California roses (Rosa californica) are blooming. Their flowers are fragile and nearly just by looking at them they go to tatters

    Last weekend: in its most happiest habitat, predominantly here are Yellow Monkeyflowers within massive rocks at Pinnacles National Park, California. #MonkeyFlowers #PinnaclesNationalPark

    Sandwiched inbewteen massive lichen covered rocks are vertical stems of monkeyflowers showing bunches of yellow flowers. The rocks are kind of forming a small channel.

    American Gold Finch digging for sunflower seeds the other day. #AmericanGoldFinch #Birds #Fujifilm

    The American Gold Finch, peering into a bird feeder hole, has a black cap and, besides it’s wings, an all light yellow body. Only the front edge of its right wing is visible and it is mostly black with some white patches. The bird is partially obscured by a vertical transparent bird feeder with a blurry (bokeh) green vegetation background.

    Our native plant garden in the front yard. It looks unmaintained but I swear it is! Nearly everything is flowering including sage, Ceanothus, globe gilia, & manzanita (nearly done flowering). Our Clarkias will be blooming soon. Bees (native & European) and ladybug larva are insane this year.

    A blue house with golden poppies amidst bushy green plants including Ceanothus with blue flowers, flowering sage, light pink Manzanita flowers, and in the middle a very happy blue oak.

    Here’s yesterday’s Bullock’s Oriole looking right at the camera. #BullocksOriole #Birds A Bullock’s Oriole sits in a violet flowering Ceanothus bush, looking straight ahead. It has an orange chest and orange cheeks. Its head is mostly orange, but it has black on top. The cute bird has black eyeliner and a black chin, creating a cool triangular pattern that nearly looks angry. You can just barely see its right wing. Its wing is black with white on the bottom.

    Bullock’s Oriole in our backyard Ceanothus. This is our first backyard Oriole! Wow. #BullocksOriole #Birds #Fujifilm

    A medium Bullock’s Oriole bird with a bright orange chest, a reddish throat, and a black chin. It has a black back with whitish wings. Its orange head has a black stripe on top and a black stripe going from the rear corner of its eye to its back. The bird is perched in a Ceanothus shrub that’s loaded with tiny violet flowers and dark green leaves in between.

    We planted our vegetable and herb seedlings today. Our home compost has turned out real nice. Took several years to build up enough for use. The worms do most of the work since we can’t get the compost hot enough for long. 🌱 Two planted crop rows with drip tape. In the background are stunningly violet flowers of Ceanothus bushes. To the right of the crop rows is patio with grapes leafing out below the awning. Gravel makes up paths between crop rows.A wheel burrow full of worm laden compost. It’s sunrise and the shadows are long.

    Our young “New Century” Asian Pear tree is in full bloom. Our “Hosui” Asian Pear isn’t mature enough to flower and cross pollinate. Maybe next year!

    Three open white flowers at the top of a very young thin leafing out tree. A stake is next to it, keeping it up right. The background is composed of blurred out gravel.

    European Honeybees were all over our manzanitas yesterday. A European Honeybee on pink-white clusters of bell shaped manzanita flowers. The stems are rust red and the leaves are bright green, shaped like perfect smooth leaves

    First bloom of our a front yard Ceanothus today. So many more to come. So. Many.

    Bright small violet flowers with bokeh of green shrubs (coyote bush) in the background.

    A hard freeze likely tonight and tomorrow night in the North Sacramento Valley. Hopefully a light breeze will keep the temps higher. Tonight we did cover up our young trees. Cold days means bees have not been foraging -not great for our nearly full bloom nectarine. Now a freeze

    Pepper garden update🌱

    garden path with ripening peppers on both sides and a glorious sunflower at the end of the trail
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