The garden is lacking in birds at the moment--my own fault, I let the charge run down on the flipper birdfeeder, and the squirrels ate all the seed. It's recharging now, and I've refilled the thistlefeeder, which is poorly designed in that there's a half-inch of thistle seed at the bottom below the little slits for beaks, so nobody can eat it, but the lazy gardener looks at it and thinks "Still some in there..." So we're down to the usual doves, the occasional hummingbird, and a pair of blue-gray gnatcatchers that live around here somewhere. (Yay, gnatcatchers!)
What it lacks in birds, however, it makes up for in bugs. I feel actually successful, because the lawn is a sort of dead space, except for the little clump of bee-covered anise hyssop, and then there's this little island that I put there, entirely with my own sweat and toil, somwhat weedy at points but mostly jammed full of flowers, and it is CRAZY with insects. We've got tons of bumblebees and giant things that are sort of shaped like bumblebees, only huge, and nameless pollinating flies and red-and-purple admiral butterflies and spicebush swallowtails and silver-spotted skippers and dragonflies--which surprise me for some reason, I associate dragonflies with water, but these are big black dragonflies with black brackets on their wings--and all manner of beetles. Including a weird assymetrically spotted ladybug I found yesterday--it was red, it had a tiny pin-point spot on the left, and the right had two large black blobs towards the rear of the shell, as if somebody had spilled india ink across the shell. Very peculiar.
And there's a cricket frog that I think lives in the bed. It makes me very happy whenever I encounter him. He is very small and I suspect there's more than enough insect life in the bed to keep him stuffed to the gills.
I can't wait until next year, when I've got some really established plants in there.
I like to think that my art has made the world a better place, I get occasional e-mails to that effect, but this is a solid material thing I can look at and go "There. That! That improved the universe!"
It is important to be able to do this occasionally.