Wednesday, June 13, 2012

European Wall lizards

I've had these little lizards in my garden for the past few years.  They look like chameleons or the geckos I saw in Hawaii.  The more mature ones are green.  I am happy to have them in my garden and multiplying.  I have very few slugs since they moved in.  Yesterday, I watched one... I thought... attacking another smaller one.  I wondered if they were cannibalistic and so googled this, of course.  I found a good informative site that informed me that I had shared a private second or seven while these lizards mated.  Sure didn't take them long... no time to get the camera.... papparatzi that I am. Further discussion over dinner lead to an informative email about the lizards in our area:  Quote:
DistributionWall Lizards are endemic to continental Europe and western Asia. They have been introduced to several locations in southern England and North America. In the early 1970s, a small group of Wall Lizards was released in west Saanich on Vancouver Island when a private zoo closed. Initially, the lizard population remained small, but once acclimated to our local climate and a breeding population established, the population grew enormously. They now number in the thousands. For the moment, Wall Lizards are restricted to the area of west Saanich, Triangle Mountain in Metchosin, and Victoria on southern Vancouver Island. Recent reports of individuals in the Gorge area of Victoria in 2007, and occasional reports - so far unsubstantiated - of individuals on some islands in the Strait of Georgia, suggest that the species is slowly dispersing. It probably is only a matter of time before Wall Lizards reach the British Columbia mainland or north-western United States, either intentionally or accidentally; southward dispersal is very likely on the mainland.
We have had none of the promised rain so I have been out watering in the garden.  There are a few vegetables sprouted and some of the flowers.  I have 13 lupines germinated in pots (out of 20 seeds, so far).  The watering makes it easier to pull the weeds.  I have weeded the thyme circle and edged it back to its 7 foot circumference edging rocks.  It is in bloom and there are more bees than last year, but still not an abundance as there were in years before.  The golden oregano beside it looks terrific.  I weeded some of the area around the thyme circle.  There is still lots of weeding to do.  
The next day, I cleaned up under the bench.  I liberated 4 flat cement blocks from the veggie garden path and added them under the feet of the bench.  I laid 3 layers of cardboard over this... that ought to keep the violets under control...watered the cardboard and put the bench back on its blocks.  It is a bit high and I hope it settles ... I may have to level it again, too.  But I do like it higher, as it had settled quite a lot over the years.  But it had no blocks under its feet... so we will see how this goes.  I moved the metal egg container thing beside it for a 'tea table'... all very rustic, in its nook in the cedar hedge.  I must get photos. The top of the table is a white plastic cutting board.  I must see if I can paint it turquoise to match the bench.  I think there is paint for plastic.  
Today, I used the hedge trimmer to trim down  the cedar hedge by the veggie garden, along the driveway a bit,  on the inside of the cedar hedge at the front, as well as the little hedge and shrubs around the water garden.  I was using muscles I never knew I had to do this and hope I am not too stiff from this.

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