Journaling for the ecofeminism class! :)

Regarding how the plans for the yard go, and my place in nature: I've put up two bird feeders — one for hummingbirds and one for seed eaters — out front as I continue to map out what changes and/or additions I intend for the yard. The seed eaters absolutely tear through the birdseed! I think I'm going to just fill it once a week, so I don't become the sole source of food — and also so I can afford to continue feeding the birds.

Reading up on the National Zoo page to remind myself of the hummingbird nectar formula, I'm pleased the hummingbird feeder is the kind where they can perch and drink, which saves them some energy. Astonishing how much sugar they need in their nectar water, though: 1 part white sugar to 4 parts water. I feel a little bad when reading about why red food dye should not be added, remembering how carefully, as children, my sister and I measured out water and sugar for the hummingbirds — then added 1 drop of red food dye per cup. About all I can say in our defense is we researched the best we knew how, and we meant well — even if we didn't know then that it was bad for them.

For the planting side of things, a lot depends on what I can find, and how much they cost. I'm also trying to pick plants that are sturdy natives that don't require a lot of water or attention, and which are attractive to at least two of the following: bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, or other birds or insects. I'm trying to stay flexible due to the varying needs I have, so at this point I think I'd like to put in one or two wild lilac or skunkbush sumac bushes against the house, and see if I can get them to grow enough that I can get them to spread along the entire side. I'm not sure yet what the ground cover will be, but I do know I'd love to buy as many sticky monkeyflower, blue bedder penstemon, California fuschia, and sage as I can afford — for their attraction to wildlife, their native sturdiness, and the beautiful flowers. If I can't afford all this I'll try seeds instead, of course. ;)

For my two big clay planters I'm thinking some herbs in one and succulents in the other. I've found a page on the internet which talks about how to make a really pretty looking little herb container garden, and the most recent issue of Sunset (I think that's the name?) has an article on some truly gorgeously colorful succulents. While I suspect the particular succulents that look so beautiful will be out of my price range, I don't see why I can't at least try planting a few nice ones, after all. I'd also like to plant a burst or two of fescue next to the container-pots, since that's just a really pretty looking grass.

Next on the list: going to OSH to learn enough to try healing the rosebushes and the wounded evergreen tree.

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