Thursday, May 20, 2010

Hairstreaks and Hydrangeas

Butterflies are plentiful now, except when I have a camera in my hand. I saw a half dozen Swallowtails yesterday fluttering around the Lantana in Nature's Garden. I got close enough today to touch an American Painted Lady, no camera in hand. When I went out to take random pics of what is blooming this afternoon I didn't expect to find a Gray Hairstreak Strymon melinus.

A precious little butterfly with spots and tails that look like a head.
When a predator graps for his 'head,' he's out of there!
I kept looking at him and wondering how he could possibly be nectaring.

Oakleaf Hydrangeas remain white and pristine, just enough rain.

Mophead Hydrangeas are starting to show some blue.

Variegated 'Mariesii' Lacecaps are among my favs.

This Hydrangea serrata was pink when I bought it, now blue.

Hydrangeas will bloom blue in acid soil.
Aluminum sulfate can be used in alkaline soil to obtain a blue color.
Follow directions carefully.
Lime will turn blues pink. I rooted a cutting in potting soil. It bloomed pink.

Flowers and text are from the garden of Nell Jean at in the hot, humid depths of Southwest Georgia USA where butterflies most often appear when there is not a camera handy.


  1. Beautiful Hydrangeas. I love the lace cap too.

  2. I haven't seen many butterflies yet - a few sulphurs but that's all - wonder why? I love your variegated lacecap! I can see why it's your favorite. I was given a potted hydrangea when my father died in March, and I just put it in a larger pot rather than in the ground - it's turned an even deeper shade of pink than it was when I got it. All those in the ground in my garden are blue.
    I love your Spam comment!

  3. Lovely Hydrangea. We planted a bush this year, and can't wait for it to grow up and bloom. I did a post today about Prairie Wild Rose, a native wild rose that blooms here in KS. Come for a visit.

  4. I cant take a good picture of a butterfly. Out of a 100 pics, maybe 2 would be "ok"...
    Just recently I have found out about Hydrangea serrata plant. I love those flowers and will buy it the first time I see it in a garden center. It would be even better if I would see it somewhere and take some cuttings.

  5. It's amazing - yesterday we all were tired from cold and snow, and today we are admiring hydrangeas and butterflies!

  6. My variegated hydrangea isn't blooming yet but will be soon! It is one of my favorites. This seems to be a good year for hydrangeas here. Yours are so beautiful!

  7. I admire your Hydrangea, so gorgeous!

  8. NeilJean,
    Cool you have hairstreaks on the coneflowers, they usually like smaller flowers. I'm in Ohio visiting family, back home 2 rare hairstreaks were seen in a dogbane not far from home, Oak and Striped Hairstreak.

  9. Love the butterfly! I can never get a good shot of them! The hydrangeas are lovely!


I look forward to comments and questions and lively discussion of gardening and related ideas.

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