Exotic Gardening with Rare and Strange Plants

Overtime Season: Day 6So many fuschia baskets! WHEW!

As spring comes into season more everyday I begin to notice the wildlife in my backyard increase. Over the years my urban oasis seems to have become a place of refuge for local critters looking to enjoy a safe place to snack . There is a small flock of birds that lives in the tree next to my house & squirrels regularly pop by to eat the remains of their fallen lunch. Butterflies and hummingbirds, leaf cutter bees and field mice regularly saunter about the back yard, as if it were their grotto and not mine. With the mice, come the stray cats and there is a little calico that has taken up almost permanent residence where the mice are plentiful. There is the odd set of crows that swoop about and compete with the sea gulls, for any stray snacks we might have forgotten on a beered out BBQ. Where there is a garden, there is life, even in the middle of the city. I suppose there is something about the greenery that puts the animals at ease and makes them feel at home.


While re potting my Primula obconica I found this half asleep wasp sitting amongst the flowers. He was so docile that he let me pick him up on a butter knife and snap a couple photographs. After his photo shoot, he buzzed off into the garden.


I have 2 gray squirrels that live within a block of my house and they scamperĀ  about and do whatever they like. Jumping from limb to limb in a nearby maple tree, they dig up tulip bulbs, snack on seeds and nuts, and hiss at my roommates dog. While they’re kind of pests at times, they’re also pretty cute, you just have to know how to deal with them.

2 Responses to Unsuspecting Garden Visitors

  • Josh says:

    Excellent blog you’ve got here Nat. I’ve begun to read through it from the first post and I really appreciate the dedication and time you’ve taken to do this! I notice in the post list it’s gotten a bit more sporadic over the years but that’s ok. I couldn’t do this for half as long as you did.

    I have a love/hate thing with wasps. I know they’re beneficial but I hate them buzzing around or getting in my home. Getting stung isn’t too pleasant either haha.

    Owen, I know it’s been a few years but I found it to be the opposite actually. I was raised in Alaska and spent over ten years in south Louisiana (a few hours west of New Orleans). The squirrels I saw both on campus and in the wild were pretty darn plump. Compared to the scrawny red squirrels I was accustomed to in central Alaska it finally made sense how people could even consider eating them. I never did though. Hard to say what was up with the ones you saw.

  • Owen says:

    That is one robust squirrel. I think the farther south you go, the scrawnier the squirrels get. The ones I saw in New Orleans looked malnourished.

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Mr Nat. Gardener, Plant Nerd
Tips and tales about gardening in one of the most mild climates in Canada. Specializing in rare and strange plants from far out destinations, this is the story of an obsessed young gardener in Victoria B.C. Let's create more tropical gardens in the garden city on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.
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