Monday, March 3, 2008

New Bird, New Tree

A wild wind is howling over the desert today. After days of warmth, it has turned chilly (for us) again, and I have turned the heat back on. Our new Desert Museum Palo Verde tree was delivered this morning. I can’t wait to get it planted. It didn’t take long for the birds to start landing in it, planted or not. We had a landscaper stop by on Friday to listen to our ideas for the back yard and draw us up a plan. We went to hear his presentation yesterday, now we just need the quote. We hope to have the backyard landscaped soon.

While others spend their weekends malling, Gus and I like to troll the nurseries for plants. This yard is so much smaller that we won’t be adding too many trees to it, but we planted over 40 on the third of an acre we had at our previous house in Utah. We did purchase a four foot saguaro though, and we hope to bring it home and plant it soon. Saguaros are a protected species and you have to have the proper permits to plant one in your yard. The nursery we purchased it from is still working out the paperwork with the state. It’s gardening time again. Photos soon to follow!

Saturday was such a warm and sunny day here. Gus and I ate breakfast outside, then I did some housework with the windows thrown wide. The songs of lesser goldfinch and house finches wafted in the open windows. Mourning doves puffed their chests as the males started their courting behavior with the females. The girls don’t seem too interested yet, but soon there will be babies coming to the feeders once again. As Gus and I were rushing to leave the house I heard so many birds in the backyard that I stopped to look at the thistle sock with my binoculars. To my utmost surprise there was a new bird there--a Lawrence’s goldfinch! In his handsome gray waistcoat, his yellow lapels and his black face mask he hung with the lesser goldfinches. I ran to find Gus in the garage where he was loading stuff into the car for our excursion that day. “Where’s your camera,” I gasped?” He came hurrying in but the bird was gone, and though I’ve watched diligently for the last 2 days, I haven’t seen it since.


Anonymous said...

isn't that always the way - never the bird and the camera at the same time?

Yard plans sound tres cool - I can't wait for the pictures. I am so jealous of the cactus I could spit!

Kathie Brown said...

Oh Wren, you made me laugh! You're welcome to visit mine if you'd like! I'll post photos soon.. will that help?

Sandpiper (Lin) said...

Your yard sounds like it's going to be beautiful and I envy your weather!

I had never heard of a Lawrence's Goldfinch, so I looked it up. What a pretty bird! I bet you see all sorts of fantastic birds there that are very different from ours in the east.

Mary said...

Kathie, I'm surprised that the Sagauro needs paperwork and a permit. Interesting...

We have a small lot (1/3 acre) but it takes a lot to fill it with trees and plants. A little at a time, each season... Might take five more years until I have a garden I'm pleased with. I'm curious to see what you plant in the desert. Your birds are already interesting enough :o)

I can't tell you how many times I saw a lifer in the yard and couldn't find the camera :o/

Doug Taron said...

Palo verdes are one of my favorite desert trees. Them and ocotillos. Will you have them in your yard as well?

Larry said...

Hey-I'm a Lawrence-that's my Goldfinch! I'm really looking forward to adding new shrubs and plants to the yard.-Every year I think I'm going to find that magical shrub that will attract all sorts of new birds to the yard.

Amy said...

Love the tree, look at those bright green stems! I can't have Palo Verde's here but I do like them very much. I'd like to have a Mesquite tree too, but again, the winters are too cold. Oh well, I can admire yours from a distance at least!

jalynn01 said...

I love the different birds you get compared to what we have in PA. Looking forward to that Lawrence Goldfinch... keep watching, and get the camera girl!! I can't imagine your weather ..over the week end we had about 10 inches of snow and freezing winds. Lucky you.

Kathie Brown said...

Sandpiper, I use to envy the weather too,then I moved here! I don't know how many birds I've added to my life list since moving here but it has been a lot!

Mary, that's because saguaros are a protected species. It takes so long for them to grow. You can't legally dig one up and move it without a permit.

Your 1/3 acre looks beautiful from where I sit. We planted over 40 trees on our 1/3 acre in Utah. Then we moved away! :(

Doug, I don't know if we will plant any ocatillos. They are all over in the desert around me, so I can see them whenever I want to. They are starting to leaf out again right now and soon they will be blooming!

Larry, isn't it nice to have a goldfinch named after you. Now whenever I see one,I will think of you! Mine hasn't been back yet that I know of. I'll try to get a photo and post it soon.

Amy, admire away! I can't have maples either, so I'll just admire yours. (you do have maples, don't you?)

Jalynn, I hope it warms up soon, and then the flowers will start to bloom!