I had never learned the name of this flowering tree that I planted 18 years ago, and I thank Grace at broadwaymatron.com for telling me its name. I don’t know why it photographs as blue as it is actually a dark purple. Perhaps too much sun. I like this blue color even more than its actual color, so I’ll support the illusion. Although the description calls it a bush, it says it can grow to 20 feet high. I think mine is about ten feet high–maybe higher.
Click on photos to enlarge. A video of the hummingbird is at the end. Unfortunately, by the time I thought to take a video, it was his last run and I didn’t really capture the butterfly.
Yesterday I watched a hummingbird sitting on a branch of the pistachio tree and guarding this tabachine. First a monarch butterfly and then a large black swallowtail butterfly repeatedly tried to sip nectar from blossoms on this tree and every time, the hummingbird swooped down and attacked them and drove them away. This went on hundreds of times over an hour period. I never saw the hummingbird feeding at the bush. I inspected it closely and there was no nest in either the tabachine or the pistachio. He was just being mean! After an hour, when the butterflies finally gave up, the hummingbird finally flew away as well. I have never seen a hummingbird stay still without feeding for that long. In between chasings, he sat still on that branch for at least an hour. Here are photos I took of the pistachio and the tabachine. And that nasty hummer.
Be sure to click on photos to enlarge your view. The third photo shows the distance between the tabachine in the foreground and the pistachio tree with the hammock I was observing from behind it. They weren’t really in close proximity
And here is the little hummer. I put out a feeder for him today. Hopefully he’ll now leave the butterflies alone.
Once again, Bob saved the day by identifying this flower. It is a pseudobombax ellipticum! (Commonly known as a shaving brush tree bloom.) If you have your own mystery flower of plant, try letting Bob come to the rescue. He is the pit bull of flower identification. Find him here: Love’s flower identification site.