Category Archives: Reflections

Flowers, Pollinators, Fungus and Breakfast With the Chickens

Flowers and Pollinators

The hibiscus bushes are blossoming.

There are three bushes in a row. The two on the ends have the deep red blossoms. The one is the middle has light pink/white blossoms.

This year we have an interesting phenomenon. One of the end bushes has both the red blossoms and the pink blossoms. This has never happened before.

The only explanation I can come up with is that these bushes drop seeds every year and small plants sprout each summer. I end up pulling them so I don’t know how long it would take for one to mature. Perhaps a seed from the pink bush grew up amongst the red bush and has become mature enough to produce flowers. So this is actually two bushes that have commingled.

Many of the plants are suffering from too much rain. The oregano leaves are turning yellow and orange. I have been tempted to cut them way down.

But the bees are enjoying the flowers

as are the butterflies, so I will leave them until they are done blossoming.

Dragonflies are not really pollinators but I do love having them around, especially since they eat things like gnats and MOSQUITOS. (Bring on the dragonflies!!!) This one was resting on an Agastache Kudos Mandarin plant, AKA Hummingbird Mint, that we planted this year.

The honey bees were foraging in the anise hyssop.

This patch of wild flowers attracts a lot of pollinators.

Look closely – how many bees do you see on the Mountain Mint in this photo? I see at least 3.

How about this one? (two?)

Honey bees aren’t the only pollinators enjoying these plants. The blue mud dauber wasps like them as well. This is the first year I have seen this type of wasp.

Honey bees like the cone flowers,

and I even spotted some foraging the purple loosestrife. That is something that we haven’t seen in the past.

It took a while but this beauty finally posed for a picture on a marshmallow plant.

Telling it to “hold still” did absolutely no good so I just had to be patient. I think this butterfly is called a Red Spotted Purple.

Fungus

When I did my mushroom post I had forgot about these puff ball mushrooms that grow every year on the hill where we someday hope to build a root cellar. They are well hidden beneath other weeds that grow up around them so we usually don’t even know they are there until late fall or winter when all the foliage dies. By that time they are just large dust balls.

When I first noticed these, a week or so ago, they were bright white. I didn’t have my camera with me at that time and as you can see they have since turned various shades of brown.

Each of these fungi is between 12 and 20 inches across.

Breakfast With the Chickens

Sunday morning I went to open up the chicken coop. When I do this my routine is to first fill their water dish. I then spread some chicken scratch on the ground in piles around the chicken yard, then I fill their feed dish before I open the coop to let them out. I do this because I know that the first thing they want to do when they come out is eat (except the rooster but we won’t talk about what he wants). If I were to let them out first I would likely have the whole flock following me to the feed can, then I would be tripping over them as I tried to the scatter scratch.

As I was filling their feed dish I noticed a deer approaching the chicken yard. She noticed me as well and we stopped for a minute and stared at each other. I then finished what I was doing while she moseyed over to the pile of chicken scratch that was about twenty feet from the coop and began eating. I opened up the coop and the chickens scattered around the area some of them joining her.

I decided to get my camera to see if I could get a picture of this breakfast club. It was still pretty dark in the chicken yard as it is in a grove of large hickory trees so i wasn’t sure how the picture would turn out.

It wasn’t until I got home and viewed the photo on my computer that I realized

that I had experienced an alien encounter. (Where’s Will Smith when you need him???)

Even when she got out in the light her eyes glowed.

Meanwhile the chickens went on their way,

cluelessly searching for worms or grasshoppers and enjoying their worry-free life.

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you have a great week!

Word of the Week – Week # 30 (Changes Coming)

Hello and Welcome!

Our word of the week is Idiom.

Merriam Webster defines Idiom as:

1: an expression in the usage of a language that is peculiar to itself either in having a meaning that cannot be derived from the conjoined meanings of its elements (such as up in the air for “undecided”) or in its grammatically atypical use of words (such as give way)

2a: the language peculiar to a people or to a district, community, or class DIALECT b: the syntactical, grammatical, or structural form peculiar to a language

3: a style or form of artistic expression that is characteristic of an individual, a period or movement, or a medium or instrument

I choose this word today because I am still finding myself struggling to find a word each week and write about it, so I have decided to change horses midstream. Rather than write a word of the week I am going to share an idiom of the week. When they were in high school my daughters had a teacher who would write an idiom on the board each day and I believe they included that as part of the class discussion. All of the girls really enjoyed that part of class, so maybe we can have some fun with them too. 🙂

Can you guess what our first idiom is?

According to The Free dictionary.com

change horses in midstream means:

1. To choose a new leader during a period of upheaval or uncertainty.

2. To make major changes to a situation or course of action that is already underway.

and according to The Phrase Finder the idea of “Don’t change horses midstream” was used in an 1864 speech by Abraham Lincoln, in reply to Delegation from the National Union League who were urging him to be their presidential candidate. He cited ‘An old Dutch farmer, who remarked to a companion once that it was not best to swap horses when crossing streams.”

Thanks for reading.

Do you use idioms often?

Can you think of an instance when you decided to “change horses midstream”? Please share in the comments section below.

A Beautiful Morning

I Plan on doing a farm update soon but since I have a busy day ahead I’ll just share some photo’s from this morning at the farm.

A Busy Momma

In the field to the east of us I spotted this momma deer with her young – TRIPLETS! It’s quite common for us to see momma’s with twins and we have seen triplets in the past but they are far less common.

The sky was just gorgeous as the sun came up this morning.

I wish you all a beautiful day!

Word of the Week – Week # 28

Hello and Welcome!

Our word for this week is Reminisce.

I was quite disappointed in Merriam Webster’s definition since it only said: the act of reminiscing (to find out more I would have to click on the word reminiscing) so I went to the Cambridge Dictionary where I found this definition for reminisce:

to talk or write about past experiences that you remember with pleasure.

This past week my husband had a box of Good & Plenty candies and offered me some. As he did we began talking about Choo Choo Charlie from the TV commercial that used to advertise Good & Plenty’s. Neither of us remembered the tune but my husband mentioned a girl in the commercial that I did not remember, so he went to his computer and was able to pull up the commercial.

After listening to the jingle a few time my husband sang it the rest of the evening. Since then at random times one of us will sing “Charlie says” to which the other replies melodically “Love my good & plenty’s”. Then we laugh. It’s just a fun little memory that can brighten our day.

Do you like Good & Plenty’s? Are there any TV commercials that bring back fond memories for you?

Thanks for visiting.