Friday, June 8, 2012

Under Attack

No, we're not being invaded by a band of miniature garden gnomes.
There are much more sinister forces
 at work in our yard!
The little guy above and the red ceramic mushroom are the first
items I've purchased for a faerie garden.  I temporarily stuck them in
a pot of flowers by the back door.  Where they'll probably still be when autumn rolls around.

Do you remember my Redleaf May Day trees that bloomed just a few short weeks ago?


After 6 years of coaxing them to stand up straight, we finally gave up the battle.
Both trees had numerous sickly branches, so we chopped them
down before they spread the disease to our few healthy trees.

One of my favorite
shrub is covered with fragrant blossoms.
I had 2 Golden Mockorange shrubs,
one on either side of the front steps,
but only one made it through
the winter.

Thank goodness we planted a hearty Linden tree.


Disease resistant.

Shade provider.

The seed pods have already appeared
and little buds will soon turn
into pretty white flowers.

Signature bright green seed pods.

On closer inspection.........

Attacked by a sapsucker over the winter!!!!
I have no idea when this *?+@> bird is pecking our tree,
but I see new holes every day!

And prepare yourself for the most disgusting of all......

 The Tent Caterpillar. 
Or as we Rangers fondly refer to them,  ARMY WORMS!!!

Don't let the pretty colored design...wait a minute!  I just noticed the design is
a series of skull and crossbones!  Fitting.
Anywho, don't let their fuzzy soft appearance fool you.
These big eaters can wipe out an entire super-sized forest lickety split!

This year we will see a minimal amount of these obnoxious critters, but
the next 3 years,  we I will be taking cover in the house when they pass through town.
Imagine an army of gazillions of these worms covering the side of your house.
They don't crawl around anything.  They march right over whatever happens to be
in their path of destruction.  These worms are trained by the professionals
at Cirque du Soleil to swing from tree to tree by their sticky web.

There is no safe haven from these fuzzy forest annihilators.

Needless to say, I'm going to enjoy every worm-free moment I can this summer. 
Here are a few photos of some new plants (annuals) and those (perennials) that have escaped the
numerous snackers in our yard.

Always dependable Columbine.

Hmm.....can't remember the name of this flower at the moment,
(Bachelor Button- thanks Carlene!)
but it has a pineapple-like flower bud.

Now that the little shade tree is gone, this barrel of plants is adjusting to more direct sunlight.

I bought this plant stand for $8 at a local shop.

Proceeds from the sale of these bright pink geranuims go to support breast cancer.

Petunias in my clearance teacup pots from Michael's.

You can just barely see the gnome peeking out of the pot of flowers

There's only one begonia so far, but what a beauty!
* It's squirrel stew for dinner if I find these flowers tossed aside
and replaced with peanuts.

I painted this sign years ago.  In fact it's dated '92.
OMG!  It's almost as old as our couch!

I picked up this vintage soap holder at an antique show in Anoka, MN last weekend.

My low-maintenance shade garden.  The only plant I water regularly
is the basket of double pink impatiens in the vintage urn.

They look like tea roses.

A peaceful sunset.

Its hard to be a disgruntled gardener on nights like these.

Wishing you a relaxing and pest-free weekend.

Join the party at:
Funky Junk Interiors Saturday Nite Special


  1. Yay you are a gardner too!
    It's a centaura montana, perennial bachelor button!
    Love your GATE!

  2. your garden looks wonderful, vickie! that bug...not so much. our trees have holes in them from woodpeckers, but, mostly they prefer my neighbors wood sideing!

  3. Oh your little gnome is so teeny! No wonder he can't fight off those tent caterpillars all by himself! You know what I remember most about those things as a kid? The smell. I could always tell when they were about to burst upon the scene on our two weeping birch. Eeeeew.

    Your yard is looking gorgeous. Love the triple teapots and your vintage '92 sign!

    I'm going to have to do a yard post as we have a few things in bloom. If only the rain would quit. And the rabbits. I'll be serving a rabbit & squirrel smorg' the way things are going here.

    Have a great weekend and keep that gnome armed!

  4. Oh yes, very sapsucker looking holes. We lost one big branch on our amur cherry this spring due to those persistent winged varmints!

  5. wow, you are really under attack, you shade garden looks like its been spared though, it looks wonderful, all of it does, the tea cup pots are really cute,

  6. Your garden is very pretty. Shame on those critters. I had only heard of army worms eating the grass. I think that is what ate our back yard.

  7. I love your shade garden! Those impatiens are just beautiful too. I've never seen caterpillars like those. We have our share of bugs, but not those. They sound like a real menace!

  8. Vickie,
    Your garden is so pretty.Love your birdbath too.So sad about your shrub.That is the one thing I hate this time of the year.And that is insects!I know we need some of them.But I hate those pesky ones!

  9. Love that shade garden. Makes one feel at peace don't you think? Sorry for the woes in the garden some years are just like that. Better to cut a few for the good of the rest.

  10. In spite of all the pest infestations, your garden is still gorgeous. Your green thumb is showing!
    I love the photo of the sun setting in the birdbath, ... so cool.
    Have a great weekend,

  11. I hate bugs making a meal of my flowers and leaves too. Hope they pass by your lovely garden. Maybe you could use an army of garden gnomes to guard the plants.


  12. I'm confused. Is there some invasion of those army worms coming your way like a swarm of locust? I seriously freaked out that you know so far in advanced and cannot stop it. Am I sounded stupid here??? Please help bring me up to

  13. The welcome sign is too cute! I'm visiting from Funky Junk; love your blog!

  14. Vicki, sorry about the invasion in your garden, I've never heard of some of those pests, but your shade garden is beautiful! I'm glad it was spared.

  15. your fairy garden will be so cute...i keep meaning to start one! i do not like the looks of that worm...
    i do LOVE your shade garden - beautiful!

  16. Oh, I do hope and pray the Range doesn't suffer badly this year from the Army worms. It can become a waste land of bare trees up there when they are in full force!!

  17. Oooh! Love the photos of the soap dish and the bird bath!

    Ug. Dang army worms! I have some pics of Mack petting one. ;)

  18. Vickie, I hate losing wonderful trees and shrubs to critters we can't control! But the rest of your yard looks pretty. Love your shade garden that looks so the low maintenance part too.
    Thanks for stopping by and your sweet comments,
    Mary Alice

  19. Hi Vickie! Oh, I'm so sorry those nasty ole worms got your tree! But you do have some lovely plants and I love your pretty flower bed up against the fence! Beautiful. Thanks for popping in to see me.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  20. Those pesky critters! Hope you can save the rest of your beautiful garden. I'm still waiting to see what's revealed in my new yard...beside poison ivy :(

  21. Ah the perils of gardening...Crippy, crawly things...Eeek! But your garden and flowers look absolutely beautiful. Wishing you a wonderful new week.

    Hugs and Kisses,

  22. Ah the perils of gardening...Crippy, crawly things...Eeek! But your garden and flowers look absolutely beautiful. Wishing you a wonderful new week.

    Hugs and Kisses,

  23. Your shad garden is lovely! I love mock orange. Great idea to use a gnome in a fairy garden. Too cute!

  24. That last photo is pretty! I love your shade garden. My yard has tons of shade so I have tons of hostas and impatiens. We had a Linden tree when I was a kid and it was one of my favorites.

  25. In spite of all the gardening set backs, your place looks lovely. We've had a worm infestation here too...ugh! It was so discouraging. I love your gnome and your beautiful shade garden. Can't believe you have a green thumb on top of everything else you do. Loved your post as usual... you always makes me smile.

  26. How sweet to see all your garden touches. You've taken some nice pictures. Sick trees will break your heart! We need to plant way more shrubs. Yours are looking very healthy. Our tent catepillars are all fuzzy and black. Thank goodness we haven't seen them in a long time. So nice to know you stopped by!

  27. Your garden is beautiful. Sorry about the little caterpillars. It's always the pretty ones that you have to watch out for.

  28. Your garden is beautiful. Sorry about the little caterpillars. It's always the pretty ones that you have to watch out for.

  29. Your garden looks beautiful Vickie. I hope you can keep the pests at bay.

  30. Beautiful garden, Vicki, but what a shame that you lost trees. The blooms of citrus trees smell sooo good. Woodpeckers- there's one that frequents my neighbor and her birdseed and I can hear him all the way over here when he starts pecking. He's up too high to see the damage so I was shocked to see what your little bugger did! Give that gnome a shotgun. ;) And those worms- they give me the shivers. I've never seen them, but I'm afraid for you if they're coming! UGH!
    Love your gorgeous begonias.

  31. Your gardens are beautiful, Vickie! We haven't had those caterpillars here...yuk. Your shade garden is really lovely!

  32. You are so funny, those bugs so look like they have skull and cross bones. So sad when you loose a tree. The rest of you garden looks great. Laura

  33. Vickie,
    I love your garden and flowers. I have never seen caterpillars like that before!

  34. OK, if those worms are as bad as you say I'm keeping my Asian beetles and not complaining.



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