The mockingbird on the patio

I have a miniature orange tree on my patio. It’s in a large pot and I use it to (ineffectually) hide the heat pump, which the peron who built this house chose to put on the patio, instead of around the side where it wouldn’t be seen or heard by the people attempting to use the patio. It’s a nice patio, with brick pavers that heave up crooked from the pine tree roots, and crumbling mortar (I’ve learned that you aren’t supposed to mortar patio bricks due to the way pine tree roots can heave them, but it was made in 1967 and I was only 2 then, so did not have a say in it’s construction), and a lovely brick latticework wall that is coming apart, due to pine tree roots heaving up it’s foundation. I am attempting to cover the cracks with wisteria, which growls grows like Godzilla on steroids around here.

Ok, so there’s this orange tree. Mom grew it from a seed off of the orange tree she has. She sprouted the seed when I got pregnant with Will, and when he was born, she gave it to us in a little pot, and here 23 years later I have this lovely tree in a big pot.

Orange tree and poorly disguised heat pump

The tree is also right outside the kitchen window,and the other day I noticed a bit of activity in it. I watched a pair of mockingbirds come and go, then upon closer inspection noticed that they were building a nest in it! Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean anything special, as mockingbirds will build several nests in a yard, and let the lady bird choose the one she likes. “Here, baby, I’ve got a house on the east side, another one in mountains and a big boat in Key West, see, I’m a good catch!”

Look, baby! beautiful nest, just for you.

Well, I kind of figured, since the patio is fairly active with constant comings and goings of people and dogs (but not cats anymore, because a month ago I decided the owls in the neighborhood made me nervous and am keeping the cats in the house, much to their disgust) that the lady mockingbird would veto the patio nest in favor of something more secluded. This morning as I was watering all the potted plants on the patio, and turned my attention to the orange tree, I felt the prickle of a venomous hairy eyeball on the top of my my head. Looking up a little, I noticed the lady mockingbird on the nest! Glaring at me! She said nary a word (uncommon for this vociferous creature), just glared with the hatred of a thousand disturbed mothers. I responded with an apology and the quiet cessation of watering, then I got the camera.

Can you feel it? The Hairy Eyeball of Doom?

Eggs! 2 of them!

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About rootietoot

I do what I can.
This entry was posted in aaawwwww, In The Garden, In The Southland. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to The mockingbird on the patio

  1. So Cool! I love when I find a nest with eggs, then I can ‘watch em’ and monitor the little chicky activity and then watch the mommy push em out of the nest and teach em’ to fly.

    Lucky you!

    Love the tree too…..how long you’ve had it, the story behind its beginnings. Also very cool!

  2. Bella Rum says:

    Ha! Better than my dryer vent! Hope we get to see the babies.

  3. SuperBee says:

    Careful there. Those birds are vicious. I was biking up Collins Avenue a couple months ago, and one dive-bombed my head. It was pretty startling…

    • rootietoot says:

      Oh yes, they’re very defensive. Mom and Dad bird make quite a ot of noise whenever I’m on the patio. While they’re mean tempered, it’s fun to watch them harass the crows that hang out around here.

  4. Rhu says:

    Awww that’s too cute

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