Wile E. Roadrunner


What, you ask, is the Greater Roadrunner, the State Bird of New Mexico, doing sitting on a fence?

It is hanging out, waiting for what it hopes will be its next meal to come to a bird feeder! I was unaware that roadrunners ate other birds until a couple of weeks ago. A roadrunner was sitting by a hummingbird feeder, and it jumped up and tried to snatch a hummingbird in mid-flight. Look at that beak! Look at that claw! I moved the hummingbird feeder that day. I’m in the process now of moving all the bird feeders away from the block wall.

Lying in wait

The roadrunner can eat all the lizards in the woodpile it wants!


‘Gemini,’ A Great Rose for the Desert Southwest

Spray of hybrid tea 'Gemini'

‘Gemini’ is a great rose for the desert southwest. This photo was shot on August 15, 2008. You can see that the rose does not lose its size, form, or color even in the heat of summer. Flowers generally appear singly, one-bloom-to-a-stem, but ‘Gemini’ is capable of making very large sprays. One year I had a spray with 13 florets; this spray has “only” five.

If you want to grow only one hybrid tea in the desert southwest, ‘Gemini’ is a great choice!


Broad-Tailed Hummingbird

Female Broad Tailed Hummingbird

Female Broad-Tailed Hummingbird

August is the best time of the year for hummingbirds in the Albuquerque region.

The wonderful little black-chinned hummers come in the spring, and are the last to leave in the fall.

But in August, we can also expect the rufous hummers and broad-tailed hummers to pass through on their migrations south for the winter. Both are here in abundance now.

The little Calliope makes an occassional appearance; I have not seen one yet this year, but I am still hoping. . . And, in the meantime, I’m enjoying the abundance of other hummers here now.


‘Cinnamon Delight,’ A Russet Rose

Cinnamon Delight

‘Cinnamon Delight’ is a miniature rose, and its official ARS color classification is russet. Russet roses are not all that common. They are generally achieved by some mix of mauve roses with yellow roses.

Probably because of the mauve component, russet roses seem to like some degree of protection from the hot afternoon sun. This one grows in a large container on the patio, where it gets lots of morning sun, but only filtered shade in the afternoon.