Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I find the small things
To be richest in beauty.
Always look closer.


These flowers belong to the red bird of paradise plant. I have three of them growing in my yard and LOVE them. First of all, they don't need much water. Second of all, they grow quickly. Third of all, they flower for months on end. Oh, and I should mention that the flowers are psychedelic in color.

Honey bees don't seem to care for the flowers, but smaller solitary bees pollinate them as do butterflies. Even more unusual, this is one of the few flowers I know that attracts wasps. But, instead of poking its head into the flower to get nectar, a wasp will crawl to the flower's stem and take a quick bite (or lick?). I can't see what they are after, but I'm guessing that the plant exudes something sweet at that stem juncture. It's rather odd when you think about it. And think about you should.

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