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Polistes and the Red Hot Poker

A species of Vespid paper wasp (Polistes gallicus, aka P. foederatus) is drawn to the copious store of nectar in this flower.


The African native flower, the Red Hot Poker plant, also known as a Torch Lily (Kniphofia sp.) stands about 4 feet tall in my garden. I planted this stunning perennial garden flower because it's tubular flowers were supposedly attractive to hummingbirds. In 7 years I have never seen a hummingbird in my yard, but many insects, including wasps climb deep inside the tubes for the nectar.

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Taken on July 14, 2011