In Monday's blogpost I mentioned this really cool rock that I found while Joy and I were hiking. The photo above is that rock. The reason I liked it so much was that little recessed area in the top. I read, awhile back, about how people are often thoughtful about putting out water for passing dogs in dishes on the ground, and for birds with bird baths, but they rarely think about water for smaller creatures like bees and butterflies and, I assume, lizards.
So, I read about it a little more. I saw that if you put marbles in a birdbath, bees can rest safely on the marbles while getting a drink on a hot day. And that in a very shallow bowl with very little water, butterflies will light to quench their thirst. It all sounded like a great idea to me. But I hadn't quite worked out the details.
I really did not want to invest in a birdbath. I've had them before and while yes, they do attract birds and it's fun to watch them splash around, cleaning it is a constant and weekly chore. At least weekly. Daily would be better. Why? Because birds don't just bath in the water, they poop their too. And bird poop is so smelllllllllllly. You absolutely have to keep up with cleaning it on the regular. Before I had a birdbath, I foolishly thought that it would be just a matter of refilling the bathwater which is a no biggie chore. Nope! It's putting on gloves and holding your breath and using a brush to scrub and then rinse thoroughly (cannot have soapy water in a birdbath) and then refill. Constantly.
On the other hand, I'm retired. I have the time. So I started looking around and didn't really see anything that appealed to me. Most of them are just the concrete pedestal and bowl thing. You need to have a good solid and very flat surface to place it (an additional purchase and effort) because it's heavy and will sink in the soil given half a chance. The birdbaths I found were different shapes and sometimes in the inside of the bowl was available in different colours but while they were all serviceable, none of them were "it".
I liked the idea of something that looked a little more, ummm, not to be too new age-y about it, but something more organic looking than most birdbaths. And maybe something smaller. Much smaller. I'm wanting to appeal to tiny creatures.
So when my eyes fell on this hunk of rock with that shallow little natural bowl in it my heart said, "Eureka!". I picked it up and showed Joy. "This is coming home with me today". She nodded, because she is always supportive and said, "Are you really going to carry that the entire rest of the hike?" I said enthusiastically "YES!" I'm sure that on the inside she rolled her eyes at me, but on the outside she said, "ok then" because she is the best sister ever.
We actually left the rock for the time being. We were not really all that far from the end of the trail anyway, so we could pick it up on the way back. But would we be able to fine it again? Yes! Of course we did. And Yes I did carry it back.
At some point I said, "I guess I'm done taking photos now because both hands are full" and I was fine with that. Until we saw a lizard shedding a layer of skin. Well heck, I absolutely need a photo of that! So I was sort of juggling the rock and the camera and Joy, very kindly, said, "Oh just give me the dang rock" so I did. And every time I found something else I absolutely positively needed to capture, she, again, babysat my rock for me.
Once home, I wondered where I would put it. I wanted it somewhere that I could see it. I soon realized that on the ground it would get lost in foliage. On top of the courtyard wall, it could fall off. Hmmmm. It was a predicament. In the end, I nestled it into a plant pot where the actual flowers have already gone by. A few tiny plants were added and a bubbled bit of glass and it's starting to look a bit like a fairy garden.
It was a time getting the rock properly leveled so the water wouldn't run right back out, but once I got it all settled in properly, the next issue was finding a proper vessel to tip water into it. It's so small you see. Just a dribble of water from a normal glass or pitcher about does it. Or overfills it and what's the point of that?
Then I remembered a tiny pitcher that I somehow came into possession of long ago and have dragged around the country with me over the years. I put my sunglasses by it so you can see how very small it is. And then the picture of the bottom because it looks fancy, "Royal Crownford, Staffordshire, England". La de freakin' dah!
At any rate, it turns out to be the perfect little pitcher for filling this watering hole. And fill it I do. Sometimes several times a day!
I have not yet seen any creatures actually drinking out of it, but I've seen several lizards in the plant pot and one butterfly taking off from the vicinity the instant I walked out the door. And the fact that when I check on it, often it is completely dry, leads me to believe that someone is using it. My new goal is to get a photo of some creature utilizing their new watering spot. I may never happen. But it's good to have a goal.
And in the meantime, it is a wonderful new addition to my potted garden (yay!)
And I am rather delighted with it!
I'm reasonably certain that I will be adding tiny things to my little fairy garden. I don't know what yet, but I can just tell that it's going to happen.
And while I haven't yet seen a butterfly or a bee or a lizard drinking out of it, I did see this cute little guy cruising nearby.
By the way it's fine with me if you think I'm foolish or fanciful or silly. I don't care at all. Just now I am absolutely tickled to bits with my new rock/waterbowl/fairy garden and that is the most important part.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.