A Congregation of Alligators
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The Kerby's Nursery E-Newsletter
June 3, 2021
Weekly Special   |   Create a Hummingbird Destination  |   New Arrivals
A Congregation of Alligators
by Joey Bokor

I can't remember if I wrote a newsletter about our first canoe trip with the girls. It's been a few years, but it was etched into our memories as the loudest boat ride we have ever been on. That's because Madeleine did not want to wear a life jacket. No way, no how. On that trip, we managed to paddle a little way up the river, but since we were all collectively miserable and any local wildlife made itself scarce, we abandoned our trip.

Fast forward a few years and we worked up the courage to try again. This past week seemed perfect, no chance of rain, bright and sunny, what better time to get out and enjoy some Florida nature. The trip went really well this time. Except for the alligators. Abby was not thrilled about seeing alligators up close from what she thought of as a wobbly boat.

The ranger at the park entrance assured her that he'd been on the river for years and had never been bothered by an alligator. He told her that they are more afraid of you than you are of them. I'm not sure she believed him. So, we loaded our paddling and picnic gear into the canoe and headed upriver. Right off the bat, I saw an alligator, maybe five feet long, lazily floating towards the left bank. At this point in the river (we were canoeing at Lettuce Lake Park) it is really wide, so there was plenty of room to give the gator a wide berth. Except then there was one to the right, and then another, and then wouldn't you know it, one is gliding gracefully right down the middle of the river.

I have to say, I'm not particularly scared of wildlife, having been around it quite a bit, but all of the sudden I started panicking a little at the thought of the canoe tipping and having to help two (well three, if you include Kim) frantic girls back into the canoe with a congregation of alligators surrounding us. Fortunately, we all settled in as we made our way further down the river and everyone realized there was nothing to fear.

We saw tons of wildlife, including plenty of gators and turtles. With the water so low, we could even see catfish and carp at the bottom of the river. Birds were plentiful, with herons, limpkins, and ibis everywhere and quite a few gorgeous roseate spoonbills. Our final point on the river before we turned back seemed to be an alligator nursery, with three little gators not even 18 inches long playing in the shallows. So cute!

And the best part is that we saw all of this because everyone in the canoe was quiet. No fussing about life jackets or being hot and hungry. Just an enjoyable day out in nature. It only took us a couple of years to get there.
Happy Gardening,
The Kerby's Nursery Family

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The Weekly Special
Vermillionaire Cuphea - 2 for $12
Start your hummingbird or butterfly garden with this gorgeous bloomer that will light up your garden with a vermillion flowers. It will be the fav place for all the local pollinators. This week, buy two and save almost four bucks. 
6" Pots, Regular Prce - $7.99
Must purchase two plants to receive the discounted price.
Can't be combined with other discounts.
Expires 6/9/2021

Create a Hummingbird Destination

Hold your hands out to the side. Now try to flap them 200 times per second (not per minute, per second). Can't do it, can you? A hummingbird can! Just one of the amazing facts about these beautiful little birds. They arrive in Central Florida during the summer, so be sure you have lots of summer bloomers to make your garden a hummingbird destination.

Plan for their arrival - Male hummingbirds arrive in March with females arriving a few weeks later. Hummingbirds will feed throughout the summer until they begin migrating south for the winter.

Types - The most common hummingbird in Florida is the ruby-throated hummingbird.

Plant Red and Orange - A variety of flowers will provide ample food, and since hummers have a preference for red and orange, those should be your colors of choice. Some of our favorites are: firebush, firespike, vermillionaire cuphea, salvia, orange plume flower and red firecracker plant.

Fun facts - Hummingbirds are only three inches long and weigh about the same as a penny. They flap their wings up to 200 times per second and feed every 10 to 15 minutes all day long.

Plant Multiple areas - Hummingbirds, especially males are territorial when nesting and feeding, so plant flowering bushes in a few areas to allow the most hummingbirds to be a part of your garden.

New Arrivals
Dwarf Allamanda

Sunny Yellow Flowers
10" Pot - $17.99

A Colorful Pollinator Favorite
8" Pot - $12.99

Blanket Flower

Heat and Drought Tolerant
6" Pot - $7.99

Send a living gift to your favorite plant person anywhere in the lower 48 states from the Kerby's online houseplant shop. New plants added every Thursday at noon.


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Kerby's Nursery

2311 S. Parsons Ave.

Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 685-3265

Store Hours

Monday - Saturday
9am - 5:30pm
11am - 4pm