Good Guys and Gals in the Garden

August 24, 2010

After days of warfare with voles, I decided to focus on the good guys and gals in and around my garden. Below are three that I find absolutely delightful.

These tiny frogs are the size of foam earplugs, and real cuties. I have hundreds of them in the garden and yard. They love to house in my wall-mounted mailbox by the front door, and of course in potted plants, groundcover, under shrubs, and beneath the soil. They jump a long distance, and so quick it’s nearly impossible to catch one—too fast for Ralphie. Parents like them because they keep their children entertained.

I’m not an expert on identifying amphibians, but they look a lot like Pacific Tree Frogs (Pseudacris regila).

Tree frogs eat crickets, moths, flies, worms, fruit flies, houseflies, moths, and other available insects. Frogs eat mosquitoes and their larvae, snails, slugs, beetles, cockroaches, insects, spiders, worms and small fish. The larger species of frogs eat mammals like rats, small reptiles, lizards.

A favorite in the garden, Monarchs are simply beautiful to watch. They’re purpose is to pollinate. Like birds, monarchs fly south, as far as 2000 miles to warmer winter climates. They migrate between August and September, which is why I’m seeing so many in my garden now. It’s helps to have butterfly plants.



Hens, the magic makers of eggs! They eat insects and raw kitchen scraps, and give me fresh virgin eggs everyday! From inside the house I can hear them brag, loudly cackling to the other ladies about laying the finest egg in the henhouse.



  1. There’s no chance you’ll ever see any type of frog in my yard but you will occasionally see a Monarch butterfly once in a while. I wish there were more.
    You are very lucky to see so many in your yard. My friend and I used to drive miles to go see the migration of the Monarch.
    My family used to have chickens, also–big red Plymouth hens. Their eggs were big brown jumbo that wouldn’t fit into a normal-size egg carton. I would love to have a couple of hens running around today. Unfortunately, the city ordinance doesn’t allows it. Ahhh, nostalgic memories.


    • Betty,

      If you can catch them you can come get some of my little frogs. There’s plenty to go around!–Dianne


  2. Thanks Dianne. You remind us to notice the wonders all around us but sometimes take for granted or forget to appreciate or even fail to see…


    • Dolores,

      Ahh, isn’t that true of most things . . . taking people, necessities, and even abundance for granted. I know I do.–Dianne


  3. I have those little frogs too. They love it down in the covered hole where our sump pump is to take the rain water out of our “flatland” garden. They made a home in an Oriental piece of statuary in our back yard which our two granddaughters loved to look through the openings in the side to see if they could see them. They also pop up sometimes when I am watering my Gerbera daisies on my front porch. I have had lots of hummingbirds this year. They love the red Salvia and another bush I have.
    My next purchase is going to be one, or maybe more, butterfly bush to attract the butterflies. I just saw some at my husband’s cousins beautiful garden in Napa. His were like a hedge with the lovely purple flowers.
    I am lucky that my neighbor supplies me with eggs periodically from her chickens. We send down feed for them once in a while .
    Yes, we are blessed to be able to enjoy all these things.


  4. Hi Dianne,
    nice meeting you – and you are a great ‘co-pilot’ on I-5 exiting!

    Going to a cactus club meeting tonight (first time) but the program will be on a member’s trip to Holland to see the tulip gardens. Would you like a recap?


  5. Had a wonderful time at the Stocton Cactus & Succulent Society meeting. Slide show of the Poots trip to Holland Flower Mart was spectacular. What an array of tulip colors. Members were friendly and knowledgeable. All in attendance were able to judge for ‘best of show’ in various cacti/succulent entries on display that night. Raffle was super-fun. We bought 6 tickets for $5 and came home with 7 cactus. An enjoyable evening with nice people and we got to see many different varieties of cactus and succlents. We plan to attend another meeting and go to the Fall Sale 10/16-17 at the Sacramento Garden & Arts Center. Toay, going on a ‘cactus hunt’ to view some ‘give-away’ cactus destened for inclusion in the new ‘cactus’ oriented garden.


  6. Went on a ‘cactus hunt’ to get some free cactus. We thought we would need a truck to haul home, however, the plants were small. Garnered 4 small containers, approximatley 5 gallons each with a delightful array of different cactus we didn’t have before.

    Now we are going to try to arrange some of the cactus in some large clam shells, I mean large, about 20″ in width. This should be interesting as it is our first attempt to ‘container cactus garden’. Other cactus in the real cactus garden doing well.


  7. I arranged my ‘clamshell’ cactus/succulent garden today. A pretty arrangement of three different types of succulents, names unknown. Also planted 3 ferns to replace a pygmie palm that was moved from the backyard to the front yard to compliment the two new ‘weighty’ concrete lions we purchased for the front porch. Had the same lions (a bit bigger in size) at a former residence but had to leave them when we sold the house. Now we once again have that ‘regal’ feeling. The porch looks nice.


  8. We had a busy day with lots of errands. I was able to pick up two books on cactus & succlents at a used book store, so now we can learn about what we already have.

    Committed to joining the cactus club, looking forward to the next meeting, which will be a ‘general store’ where members can bring extra plants or gardening items or homemade foodstuffs for a raffle. Sounds like lots of fun.


    • Did you get the books at the Friends of the Library Bookstore.? I was there yesterday and saw a cactus book and immediately thought about you. How funny. Garden clubs can be a lot of fun and educational. Enjoy your new adventure.


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