Wait and see

Eastern Black Swallowtail butterfly caterpillar

As long as I can remember I’ve had an infatuation with insects. Particularly, butterflies and moths. Last week, I discovered an Eastern Black Swallowtail butterfly caterpillar that had consumed everything edible on a dill plant that was a volunteer. (I left it in place specifically because I knew it to be a host plant for the black swallowtails.) I brought it in and foraged for another host plant substitute: parsley, which I had in abundance elsewhere.

Eastern Black Swallowtail butterfly chrysalis

The next morning I discovered 2 more caterpillars sadly moping on the bare dill stems. I brought them into the nursery for protection. Fast forward: The first caterpillar’s transformation to its chrysalis happened last Sunday, the second caterpillar transformed overnight last night, the third is getting ready and ‘assuming the pose’ so it won’t be long. Now it’s just a waiting game!

If you aren’t familiar with the life cycle of butterflies, HERE is 2-second lesson.

Speaking about insects, I’m saddened to report that Shelby (OH) County to the north of Dayton, has joined the ranks of Ohio counties affected by the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB). The USDA has confirmed the presences of EAB at Lake Loramie Park and the City of Sidney.

Educational opportunities

Volunteer Naturalist Training

Are you interested in becoming trained in the field of Ohio Natural Resources and sharing your knowledge with others? The Greene County Extension has the 2011 Fall Training Classes starting September 9 and running through November 4. Call the Extension office at 937-372-9971 or visit http://greene.osu.edu.

Trees in Your Home Landscape

The Greene County Master Gardeners are offering a tree workshop on Saturday, September 10 at the Peace Lutheran Church (3530 Dayton Xenia Rd, Beavercreek OH). Keynote speakers include Thais Reiff, a Greene Co. Master Gardener and insect specialist; Steve Foltz, director of Horticulture at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden; and Wendi Van Buren, Professional Urban Forester with the Division of Forestry of the ODNR. Read more HERE.

Compost classes being offered

The City of Dayton’s Department of Public Works is partnering with Five Rivers MetroParks to sponsor four backyard compost classes at four different Dayton-area locations. Dates are Aug. 22, Sept. 7, Sept. 22 and Sept. 25. An added bonus is that each participant will receive a a Free Garden Earth compost bin. To register or obtain more information, contact Melody Frock, Div. of Street Maintenance, at 937-333-4808. Classes are limited to 60 participants.

Midwest Birding Symposium

One of the things on my life ‘bucket list’ is attending the Midwest Birding Symposium. This year the symposium will be September 15-22 at Lakeside, OH. With over 22 fantastic speakers, this is the birding event of the year! Check it out HERE.

Your vote counts

The Litte Miami River Keepers, a local 501(c)3 organization committed to protecting and preserving the Little Miami River (one of America’s most wild and scenic natural resources, is in the running for a grant from Tom’s of Maine. Check it out HERE and support their cause with your vote.


1 thought on “Wait and see

  1. I went to Franklin Conservatory with the Wegerzyn Bus trip last Thursday. The poinsettias were beautiful and some small ones were for sale in the gift shop with red, silver, and gold ornament type containers. The large tree made of poinsettias as you enter was stunning. Go to the Franklin Conservatory this month if you can. The Chuahuli glass was displayed beautifully also.

    Sue Keck

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