Bee Balm1

Bee Balm2

From Wikipedia:

Monarda is a genus consisting of roughly 16 species of flowering plants in the mint family, Lamiaceae. The genus is endemic to North America. Common names include bee balm, horsemint, oswego tea, and bergamot, the latter inspired by the fragrance of the leaves, which is reminiscent of bergamot orange (Citrus bergamia). The genus was named for the Spanish botanist Nicolás Monardes, who wrote a book in 1574 describing plants of the New World.

Perhaps Vicki in Michigan can help identify this one. For the life of me, I can’t remember its name.

Mexican hat


Bee balm and clematis

What’s with all the moths lately? We found a white-lined sphinx hummingbird moth enjoying the bee balm in our garden yesterday.

I think they’re gorgeous.

See the curled proboscis in this picture?


Caterpillar hosts: A great diversity of plants including willow weed (Epilobium), four o’clock (Mirabilis), apple (Malus), evening primrose (Oenothera), elm (Ulmus), grape (Vitis), tomato (Lycopersicon), purslane (Portulaca), and Fuschia.

Adult food: Nectar from a variety of flowers including columbines, larkspurs, petunia, honeysuckle, moonvine, bouncing bet, lilac, clovers, thistles, and Jimpson weed.

Habitat: A wide variety of open habitats including deserts, suburbs, and gardens.

Range: Central America north through Mexico and the West Indies to most of the United States and southern Canada. Also occurs in Eurasia and Africa.

Management needs: Occasional outbreaks of caterpillars have damaged tomatoes, grapes, and garden crops in Utah. (And at Morning Bray Farm.)

For gazelle: Our double-decker bee balm flower below. Interesting how the first photo (above), taken in soft early morning light, shows the true color of our bee balm. This second photo (below), taken in harsh mid-day light, shows a much redder flower. 

And how cool is this? The photo below is of gazelle’s double-decker bee balm. Thank you, gazelle! I can’t wait to look through the rest of your pictures.  And look at her beautiful clematis in the background! The red and the purple are stunning together, aren’t they?