Not only bees – South Mountain Bees

Not only bees

Hi! This is Adriana, the beekeeper from South Mountain Bees.

The nice part of gardening for bees is that you get rewarded with wonderful visitors.

I planted blue lobelia several years ago, and it keeps coming back stronger every year. Unlike weeds, having a butterfly magnet that keeps coming back is a gardener's dream.

We usually get Eastern Tiger Swallowtails like this one.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

But I saw this beauty, and it wasn't a Black Swallowtail or a Spicebush Swallowtail, it was an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail dark-phase. You can see the faint tiger stripes here.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Dark-Phase (ventral)

Apparently only female Tiger Swallowtails have a dark version, and the rumor is that males prefer the yellow ones, so that's why there are fewer of them. So she's not only beautiful, but also rare.

Here's a dorsal view.

It was a treat to have her enjoy the blue lobelia. I leave you with this short clip of her visit.