BASICS: "Hummingbirds.....where is the person, I ask, who, on observing this glittering fragment of the rainbow, would not pause, admire, and turn his mind with reverence..." (J. J. Audubon).
This is a blog about my summer life at the Baiting Hollow Hummingbird Sanctuary, at my winter garden, Calypso, in the Bahamas, and aspects of life in general.
This private sanctuary is now permanently closed to the general public, as a result of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. Only my friends and personal guests may visit (

Monday, August 22, 2011

Open Today 3-6; spanish moss

We will be open today from 3 to 6. For info and directions see
Yesterday afternoon was busy, with plenty of new faces and old friends form previous years. Fortunately the weather stayed good and there were plenty of hummingbirds around. Today there are fewer hummers (some left on the north wind that developed overnight) but still a fair number, fattening up for the arduous journey ahead.
Many visitors comment on the spanish moss (Tillandsia usnoides) on the wild cherry trees. We bring it up each year from Georgia or the Carolinas. This year most of it came from a beautiful bed-and-breakfast plantation we stayed at ( near Georgetown SC; we pick it up off from the ground where it would in any case get mowed, and some of it is already brown and dead, but it does well in the warm humid Long Island summer. However, only small pieces survive the severe winter. It is a green flowering plant (spraying with water brings out the green color). It has tiny fragrant flowers, and, like most other bromeliads, it is an epiphyte, using trees only for support. It derives all its nutrients from the air and rain. It is amazing to realize it is a close relative of the pineapple!
The image shows the moss in july, with crocosmia (known in the UK as montbretia) "Lucifer" flowering with "Hyperion" dalylilies. You can also see the mimosa flowers, and in the background Monarda fistulosa. Except the daylily, all are good hummingbird plants.

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