Cross-posted at Whorled Leaves
Cross-posted at Whorled Leaves
Here I am at 4867 ft. looking flushed and glad for a place to sit down and enjoy the view. Once we're at the peak of the mountain, we generally take a break for lunch and take lots of photos. One year I took nearly a whole roll of film with pics of nothing but rocks.
There is always an interesting assortment of tourists milling around and one year the building that houses the elevator at the summit had a few Luna moths clinging to the windows! I've only ever seen Luna moths in the Adirondacks, so it is a treat to find them. On one visit the toll building at the bottom of the mountain was covered with them and other interesting large moths. We watched little chickadees coming in from the wood's edge and flying off with the moths in their bills.
One particular part of our yard has gone through so many transformations it's hard for me to remember them all. We started out with a very formal circle garden in this area, a simple design of blooming azaleas, English ivy and pachysandra, a hydrangea, and a beautiful variegated holly tree; all originally planted and cared for here by the previous owners of our house (my husband's aunt and uncle). A late summer storm one year brought down a neighbor's black locust on our holly, splitting the trunk. We salvaged the hydrangea, but replaced everything else with viburnums (love them!) and old garden roses. This was nice for a while, until the roses got leggy and the viburnums grew huge! So we moved the viburnums to the border of our property and added a few dogwoods and other plants to make something of a woodland edge. Very nice and thriving now!
A year later we cleared the area and built the pond there. But for the summer in between I had a garden that was an absolute riot of flowers. I went crazy planting annuals and perennials that would attract butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds. My husband thought it looked like crap (he's an orderly sort of fellow when it comes to *his yard*), but I loved the craziness of it all. Every flower was planted with pollinators in mind and it was buzzing with them! I loved to spend time sitting in the middle of it all and watching all the insect activity.
When we put in the pond I transplanted as many plants as I could. The pond is orderly and neat, so the DH is happy, but I miss my wild garden and all the wonder that came with it that summer. The purple flowers pictured above are perennial Mexican Agastache (very popular with bumblebees) and Verbena bonariensis; an annual that re-seeds with utter abandon and is well-loved by butterflies.
Sapsuckers remove the outer layer of bark and bore into the cambium, causing the sap to ooze out of the tree, which they drink with their long tongues. Their habit is to return to the same tree over and over and this can cause significant damage to the tree. I liked the pattern so I snapped the photo, although at that time I had never actually seen a sapsucker. Since then I've learned to recognize their *mewing* calls and sometimes find them in my neighbors apple tree. Last spring I had a great look at one outside my office window in a blooming crabapple tree. The are very pretty birds that might easily be mistaken for a downy woodpecker. The yellow-bellied sapsucker has a white wing-stripe and dull yellow underparts that are good field marks.
Momentary Rant: Blogger is sapping what little creativity I have lately; I'm having soo much trouble uploading images!!
Come on out, bring snacks, we'll be glad to have you!
This is a wonderful book to introduce children to birds. I think I bought my copy back when I was teaching elementary school and read it on occasion to my students during the last moments of the school day. Burgess includes information about each birds' appearance, habits, and personality incorporated into story form. He includes those birds that little children are most likely to see and the illustrations are true to life.
The story begins with the arrival of Mistress Spring. Peter Rabbit goes into the orchard looking for spring's new arrivals and meets Jenny Wren, the local gossip, who is happy to tell him all about the other birds as they arrive in the Green Meadows. One by one Peter Rabbit meets all of the common country birds and learns about them from Jenny Wren. What is most endearing to me are the names that Burgess gives each of the birds. There is Bully the English Sparrow, Slaty the Junco, Dear Me the Phoebe, and Scrapper the Kingbird among the cast of characters. This book is worth searching out in your local library or used bookstore, even if you don't have children. Burgess' love for birds is obvious. Is it any wonder I love this book - bird stories told by a bunny!
For those of you who don't know bunnies and who think rabbits are snuggly balls of fluff (as the photos of Boomer and Cricket might lead you to believe) - well, you're probably wondering what all the fuss is about, right? I admit that I'm overly cautious, but rabbits are very territorial, especially females, and can really hurt one another. I'd like to avoid anybunny getting hurt so I'm taking this very slowly.
Today was a good day, Missy and Freckles are showing signs of being able to get along; I was happy to be able to step away and let them work out their issues. Unfortunately, it seems like they still have the same issues as they always did. Missy wants to be the boss and so does Freckles. Freckles is the submissive one, usually, but she's not ready yet to feign over Missy the way Missy thinks she ought to. So, they arrive at something of a standoff. Both bunnies think the other should give all of the affection. Missy takes the lead and washes Freckles ears and eyes, but not nearly as gently as she should. Missy's roughness makes Freckles jump, and run away, and then a minor chase ensues. I watched this sequence over and over today. Finally exasperated with both of them, I packed up the x-pen until another day and put them back into their lonely habitats. Both clearly want to be friends, yet they can't seem to agree on who should make a compromise.
|You Are Mint Green|
Balanced and calm, you have mastered the philosophy of living well.
Your friends seek you out for support, and you are able to bring stability to chaotic situations.
You're very open and cheerful - and you feel like you have a lot of freedom in life.
Your future may hold any number of exciting things, and you're ready for all of them!