# A PHOTO A DAY KEEPS THE DOCTOR AWAY – Day 19

From the archives

15th February 2011

I suspect the image below was made during the golden hour as both the insect (mantis? No, Gary has identified it as a katydid in the comments section. Just checked with Mr Google and apparently there are over 2000 in this insect species in Australia), the plant it’s on, and the background, are way too bright for a normal photo in the Royal Botanic Gardens perennial border (which is where this photo was made).

…….and here’s the Perennial Border where the plant was (below).  It’s located on the far left outside the frame of this part of the border, but I just happen to like this image out of the 7-8 I’ve made over the years.

The Blood Grass, highlighted in a previous post, is located in the bottom right-hand corner of the frame.   The Perennial Border is planted to be at its peak flower-wise around mid-January (Summer).

Here’s the flower from a previous post on Day 3 that shows the colour and light difference.

THE ENEMY HAS LANDED…………

I was admiring the lovely streaks of rust-coloured bark in the Eucalypt(?) trees at the top of my road yesterday when I suddenly spied some movement.

I realised the enemy, HARLEQUIN BUGS (Dindymus versicolor), were in the start of mating season and if I wanted to have any semblance of a Spring Garden I’d really have to take more serious  action this year and stop admiring their colourful backs.

THE BUSH OUTSIDE MY FRONT ENTRANCE 3 DAYS AGO.

Not only did they eat just about every leaf in my balcony garden, they even ate every single Sage leaf – all 100 to 120 or more.  The pungent leaves of Sage are meant to deter pests, not attract them.  Sage was the only one of my herbs to not recover this past winter and I’ve thrown it out.  I’ve also thrown the enormous Rosemary bush out.  It was potbound and had been cut in half twice with the gusty winds, so I’ve decided to replace it with a more prostrate variety.  Rosemary flowers were also on the Harlequin Bugs dinner menu to my surprise.

These bugs must be very hardy indeed.

Kate at Achievable Gardens had some good advice.

I’ve already posted this shot of my Pink Argyranthemum last week, but it was more the interest in photographing a small insect with my 17-50mm lens, than acknowledgement of the savage pest onslaught to come in the near future.

Today and tomorrow are going to be superb Spring days so I’ll be taking the opportunity to plan something new.  A couple of weeks ago I found the heavier potted plants TOO heavy for my fragile back and hip pain, so a redesign is necessary (and if I’m honest, keeps me amused).

I’m just getting over another virus (the 2nd this year) at the moment, so I don’t feel up to going too far afield.  I don’t normally catch flu type viruses and this year has been highly unusual.  But then I rarely mix with the Homo Sapiens in the area, preferring Flora and Fauna for company, so it was probably last Tuesday’s lengthy foray in the nearby Shopping centre, with its 500+ stores, that caused me to come in contact with Human bugs.

 Or maybe I’m just getting old. 😯

I often wish I lived in the country with just four-legged friends for Company………. maybe in my next life 🙂