Thursday (03-June-2021) — New Jersey

Springtime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Lot of images today. Birds, Frogs, Snakes, and Flowers. The Brood X Cicadas are everywhere and continue singing their love song.

Birds viewed in the backyard: American Robin. The American Robin was feeding on a Cicada.


Birds of the day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Kermit the Bullfrog and all of his relatives in the pond are getting fat fast this spring. Presumably out feeding on the Cicadas.


Bullfrogs in the pond. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Bullfrogs in the pond. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

The Brood X Cicada is not feeding, just resting on the flower.

Cicada. (David J Mathre)
Cicada (brood X). Image taken with a Nikon 1 V3 camera and 70-300 mm VR lens. (David J Mathre)

Spring flowers blooming: Love-in-a-Mist, Red Poppy, California Poppy.


Love-in-a-Mist. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Red Poppy. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


California Poppy. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Spring Flowers. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Patio Garden: Grow Towers and Soft Pots. Seedlings from the indoor AeroGarden Farms transplanted a month ago. Strawberries planted last year, remained outside over the winter. Some of the strawberry plants survived being nibbled on by deer.

Grow Tower 1: Radish, Strawberry, Arugula, Spinach, Broccoli, Collard Greens, Swiss Chard.
Grow Tower 2: Radish, Strawberry, Kale, Dill, Anise, Cauliflower, Kale, Mustard.
Grow Tower 3: Dill, Basil (Sweet, Lime, Lemon, Dark, Culinary, Cinnamon).
Grow Tower 4: Garlic, Strawberry, Basil (Genoa, Holy).
Grow Tower 5: Scallion, Oregano, Basil (Sweet, Thai), Coriander (various).
Grow Tower 6: Garlic, Thyme, Epazote, Parsley (various), Hot Peppers.
Grow Tower 7: Garlic, Sage, Oregano, Mugwort.
Grow Tower 8: Chives, Lemon Grass, Tarragon, Parsley (various), Dwarf Cosmos.
Grow Tower 9: Carrots, Rosemary, Thyme, Parsley, Dwarf Zinnia.
Grow Tower 10: Poppies (Iceland, Red, California, Oriental).


Grow Towers 1-10. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Outer Rim Soft Pots 1-4: Cucumber.
Outer Rim Soft Pots 5-8: Summer Squash.
Outer Rim Soft Pots 9-11: Peas.
Outer Rim Soft Pots 12-17: Zucchini.

Center Soft Pots: Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes, Golden Harvest Cherry Tomato, Gray Stripe Sunflower, Red Sun Sunflower, Autumn Sunflower, Double Sun Sunflower.


Soft Pots. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (46.0 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (32.3 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Rain and clouds. A deficit of 13.7 kWh.

Saturday (29-May-2021) — New Jersey

Springtime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Visitors backyard and the patio birdfeeder: Mourning Dove, House Finch. Not many birds visiting during the emergence of the Cicadas.


Daily backyard visitors. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Spring flowers blooming: Oriental Poppy, Love-in-a-Mist.


Spring Flowers. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Grow Towers (1-10) on the Patio.


Grow Towers. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Soft Pots on the Patio. Tomatoes and Sunflowers. Also an attempted Milkweed transplant.


Soft Pots. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (42.3 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (14.7 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Cloudy and rain. A deficit of 27.6 kWh.

Friday (30-October-2020) — New Jersey

Autumn Backyard Nighttime Nature in New Jersey.

In New Jersey, the night before Halloween has sometimes been called “Mischief Night” where teenagers engage in pranks and vandalism — throwing eggs, toilet papering trees, setting fires, etc. Well this year, a deer got up on my patio and did the mischief. It ate the Kale, Swiss Chard, Broccoli Rabe, Parsley, Basil, Thyme, and Strawberry plants in my Grow Towers. It ate the leaves on the Hot Pepper plants, but left me the Hot Peppers. It wasn’t able to reach the Carrots and Garlic on the top level. It also managed to disturb and damage some of the soft pots and other items out on the patio as it moved around each of the ten Grow Towers.

Daily Electric Energy Used (??? kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (14.2 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Cloudy and rain. A deficit of ??? kWh. The folks at Sense have been have issues providing energy usage data for the last several days.

Tuesday (15-September-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Out working on the patio, I harvested the Broccoli Rabe and Radishes in the Grow Towers. This opened up light for the Basil and Pepper plants. I also distributed worms in to the composting tubes in each Grow Tower. I used the Ricoh Theta Z1 360 degree camera to make time-lapse Little Planet videos of the work on the patio. Same workflow as yesterday: Theta Z1 Camera set to record images using program auto mode (shutter, aperture, white-balance, JPG + RAW (DNG) every 10 seconds. Camera mounted on a tripod just above head level. The camera collected ~ 360 images (~ 1 hour) before running out of internal storage space. The DNG dual fisheye images were processed with Capture One Pro, saved in TIF format. Then converted to 360 degree equirectangular pano images with PTGUI (batch process). The Little Planet time-lapse video was created using PhotoShop CC (image converted to 1:1 format (7430 x 7430), rotated 180 degrees, converted to polar coordinates, then exported as a MP4 video (1920 x 1920, 10p). Rotation to the video was added using Premiere Pro.

Daily Electric Energy Used (39.7 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (52.1 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. More sun. A surplus of 12.4 kWh.

Monday (24-August-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

I spent the morning working on the patio (time-lapse little planet video). The Grow Towers are doing well. I’ve been harvesting large radishes, broccoli rabe, Swiss chard, and dill. Zinnia and Coreopsis are blooming in the outer cloth pots. I planted Marigold and Roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa) in the inner set of cloth pots. No Marigold flowers yet, and five of the Roselle are growing fast. Several volunteer tomatillo and/or ground cherry plants also sprouted in the inner set of cloth pots.

A herd of deer passed through the backyard just before it started to rain. Then before the sun went down I noticed a partial double rainbow.


Deer in the Backyard. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Partial Double Rainbow. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (62.7 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (62.0 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. More sun and a bit of rain. A deficit of 0.7 kWh.