While out checking on my morning glories and doing a general tour of the balcony plants with a cup of coffee, I spotted this very cool butterfly (or moth). I've got a volunteer tomato plant that is roaming about near the morning glories, and it took me some moments to notice his (or her) camouflaged self. (Clearly, it's time to start learning the names of my flying and crawling neighbors.)
It's a real pleasure to find more wildlife on the balcony, and it reminds me of one of the many reasons I love growing things. Growing my food is easily my number one reason for having plants on the balcony as well as in the garden, but flowers and herbs are just as important to me. A garden (or a farm, for that matter) benefits from the beauty of blooms of all types and assorted leafy matter. Beneficial insects - pollinators and predators alike - settle in the leafy spots for the little buffet those blooms create, and any pests that settle on nearby crops.
Supporting such biodiversity isn't just for the folks at Nagoya's COP10 Conference, but it's for gardeners, farmers, and everyday folks, too. We rely on these little ones to give us the food we eat everyday, the medicines we rely on when we or our loved ones are ill, as well as for our clothing and shelter. It's also not difficult. Setting out a potted plant - large or small, many or few - or tending a garden is lending a helping hand and being, in a small way, part of a bigger picture.