Friday, April 26, 2019

Variety is the Spice of Life

I am a big fan of variety and used to spend my free time moving furniture around my home for a fresh look. I rarely cook the same thing two weeks in a row as I like variety in my food. My husband jokes that he is surprised that I have stayed married to him as long as I have since I like variety so much.

One of my favorite spring plants is the Columbine plant which comes from the buttercup family. It used to be called Granny's bonnet and that seems easy to understand when you look at the flowers. The common name columbine is from the Latin for Dove. The species is Aquilegia (meaning eagle). I will leave you the riddle of figuring that out because this post is just about the beauty of variety. All of these bloom in my front yard, many just appeared!!

State flower of Colorado

This is our native columbine which came down from Canada.

This is a photo-painting...just for fun and variety!

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Wild Spring

Sharing a little more of the lovely angles of the sun against the colors of spring. All photos below are wild plants and not something I have planted. They compete very nicely with my more tame flower beds. Maybe those will be revealed next!

The beginnings of the little red oak tree.
Sassafras albidum blossoms.

The Tulip poplar has leaves like flat tulip silhouettes and blossoms that are like actual tulips.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Repeat Resident

This precious little gray frog lives somewhere on the forest floor throughout the winter months and returns in the spring. He makes glycerol (glucose that acts as antifreeze) in his veins which circulates to avoid his freezing during the winters! His heart actually stops! He hibernates in leaves or soil on the forest floor as the days get cold and yet finds his way back here to our deck when the weather warms every spring.

His breeding season is April through August and the female can lay as many as 2000 eggs in standing water. He has a familiar song which is so nostalgic to me. This frog usually hides up in the collapsed green umbrella on our deck as the weather warms. I have opened the umbrella on a warm, late afternoon and am surprised as he falls into my hair or on my arm like a soft damp sponge.  Neither of us panic.  My grandchildren have been surprised as well by his fall. Last week I took this photo of him snoozing on the banister of the deck near the citrus trees.  I should give him a name.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Sharing Some Beauty

While I spend much early morning light trying to freeze spring, she, in turn, spends the daylight twirling in a ballet that ends far too soon!! Let me share a few photos out of the many.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Bargain Bins

Our growing zone gets too hot for tulips to survive. You may get 20 or 30 percent to return, but that is lucky. I wait until December and go through the bargain bins in the hardware store where they put the net bags of all the tulips at half price. They are still in pretty good shape and are usually bagged where you can see the size and color, even if mixed. I buy two or three bags, face the cold of winter and bury them in pots in both the front and back yard in December. This afternoon of bitter planting rewards me tremendously in the spring. I will try to save them through the year, but not holding out hopes. The colors are mixed but seem to look good together.  I sometimes cover the pots with pebbles to discourage hungry squirrels.

I put the bright red ones at the front walkway.

But also left a few on the deck to enjoy while we grill outside.

The blooms last more than a week if the weather holds cool and they close up like little evening purses as the sun sets.

Monday, April 08, 2019


One of the first changes in summer is the late afternoon pleating of our finger of the water. What this tells me is the larger motor boats are now out on the river returning from favorite fishing spots or others are heading out for a sunset ride on the river. Their wake slowly makes its way around the point of land and into our little finger of water turning the surface of the water into a pleated fan.

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

Little Things

It is the little things that are so easy to miss. In the noisy rush of life, we tend to scan the horizon and listen for the demanding and warning sounds and forget to stop and rest our eyes on what is right in front of us before our footsteps, small but perfect, quiet but significant, fragile and oh so temporary in the brief respite that is spring.

These daffy-down-dillies above are about nickel size.

This hybrid speedwell snuck itself into a pot of some other annual I was buying many years ago, and I nurtured it and put it into one of my flower beds, where each year it gently spreads and rewards me with these lovely flowers.

These exotic flower stalks may be from my Heuchera.  I have to wait and see what those small leaves look like.