I couldn't go a summer without posting a photo of my favorite flowers, zinnias. I confess, I usually cut them when they are smaller and have them finish opening up in the vase to beautiful shades and variations. I procrastinated... No further sighting of the praying mantis. He/she must be down in the stems eating bugs (surely there is a good supply of aphids down there). Last summer I saw a praying mantis rip the head off a honeybee and proceed to eat it...They are effective predators but indiscriminate. I have had fewer bug problems this year with earwigs who were plentiful earlier in the year. Last year, they were pretty bad in the pluot trees. All of the leaves were moth eaten from them. I couldn't work on the trees without getting showered with earwigs. I think the heat might of done them in which was a good thing. I ended up with 62 pounds of plots halves frozen. I think the tree must have produced at least 100 pounds of fruit!