Thursday, August 31, 2017
I learned about skippers from friends on the blogs. The zinnias are busy with skippers and painted ladies feeding on them. There are other flower gardens in the area so the larger butterflies are finding plenty of places to feed.
We had a nice evening last night as the neighbors were outside while i was out with Barney. The one neighbor collects older Schwinn bicycles and he was out with his son trying out a newly reworking of a beautiful red bike. It was dark but the street lights made it to be nice. The bike shinned in the street light and my neighbor Doug polished things up beautifully . His son was actually there to help him tune up the bike for him. Doug is older than me. So it was son helping dad with his bike.
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
It was good, just not great. I thought its seemed a little light in flavor and sugar. I have more to just give away as I am the only one who really can eat large quantities of it. I will share with each neighbor on each side of me and any others that I see outside.
Harvesting and eating it is a good thing. We have had fresh slices for every meal and a few batches of BLTs. They have started ripening all at once but they have slowed down so we don't have waste.
They do all look alike after while but the color on this one is good. I am happy that they haven't all lean in different directions. I do know the seeds will weigh down the plants and their heads will tip down eventually.
I worked at the house for a while this morning. I really need to go back and do some major work on mowing the yard. The rains up there have kept everything growing green unlike my yard that still is somewhat dormant. We had a warmer day today with it getting up to 80 F. degrees. I wish you all a great evening and thanks for stopping by today.
Tuesday, August 29, 2017
One little goldfinch was demanding to be fed by an adult while sitting on the railing yesterday. Everything has now changed as the baby birds all followed the adults to the feeder by the end of the day.
Todays photo shows some of them at the sock feeder today. There are six of them altogether in the group.
I still don't have the answers about these birds. I read that the males are territorial. I also read the a young male is grayish brown for the first year as it readies to breed that next year. I assumed that the female was not yellow but I may be wrong. These two yellow birds seem to be taking care of the six. If they are both males, then they may be the fathers of each half of the crowd. I did see an article that showed a large quantity of birds in the nest so they could be all from one nest. I guess I will have to find a better source on the internet to figure it all out. I have never seen anything like this behavior.
Three of my sunflowers have decided to open and to develop their seeds. They look like the three amigos here lined up in the sky. All of the sunflowers are going to bloom, these are just the first three.
It would have been a great sunset to see. The parts of the sky we can see here shows that it must have been a beautiful one. The western part of the state did get some rain from these clouds. This morning we were completely clear without a cloud in the sky. That changed by noon site as we have a lot of clouds blocking out the sun.
I am blogging late again today. It seems to be I get too busy to get started on it. I hope everyone who follows me is still safe at this time. Thanks for stopping by today
Monday, August 28, 2017
The earliest zinnias to bloom are now pretty much gone. They look haggard and worn out but the shape is still fun to look at during its retreat. The wind took out a section of my zinnias causing them to lay side ways. As I mowed this morning, I was surprised that I did not get out there and prop them up. Maybe tomorrow I can give them a little assistance.
The newest batch of goldfinches are at the feeder. This is the first time that this guy was at the feeder as he sat on the hook for a long while and then now is trying to pick at the string. Eventually he did make it to the side of the seed sock but it was strange seeing him just sit there on the hook. I don't know how many batches that they hatch in a season but if they do two batches I would think this is the second round.
My wife was remarking as to how we cherished the vies of at least one goldfish at our old place but the new place is giving us continue traffic of finches. I had not seen house finches for a while but just yesterday there were a couple of them feeding.
While out and about yesterday I happened to notice that the zinnias had bloomed with an orange and red theme in this one area.
Right next to the others is this color-schemed set of blooms. I know that I could not get this to happen if I tried.
After mowing the backyard this morning I spent time working with the house plants. I don't have pictures yet but I finally repotted a plant that has been crowded out for a few years. It is a cousin to the mother-in-law tongue only shorter and darker green. I ended up with five different containers of them after I made all of the divisions. The violets that are in bloom right now need to be repotted but I will wait until they back off with blooms. This violet shown here is a new one. I am such an addict to cheap violets. I bought a white one earlier this month. They do give the away after the bulk of the shipment is sold out.
What can I say, the new living room has windows that makes them grow and bloom. I have an older violet that has a stretched out stem that will get repotted this afternoon. I am hoping that it survives my digging and replanting it again.
I mowed the front of the yard yesterday and today I mowed the back. We are getting dew in the morning and that is helping to bring back the dormant grass to green again. I still have some dead looking please but to the most part it is evening out and coming back.
I did water the zinnias, sunflowers and melons this morning as they seem like they could use it. We had good rains but I don't want things to get a chance to dry out. While watering I found a rotten muskmelon. I don't understand how it just becomes extremely soft but maybe some one stepped on its vine. I did pick a muskmelon and pictures will follow on another day. My wife and I will never be able to eat six or seven melons so we will have to find some others in which to share.
All of the people that I know, or who are related, that live in Texas are good. I know that being safe if best even if damage is existing. My wife and I both have relatives that live in the area and other good friends from blogs. I hope the rain will just quit now and give it a chance to all drain away from the land.
Thank you for stopping by today.
Sunday, August 27, 2017
I have memories of the old fashioned locust trees on the farm in southern Iowa. They were not a great shaped tree with lots of thorns. The tree tended to shed its branches with the thorns on them. They did have the same kind of leaves as this modern one has but their really is not any other good comparisons. The tree in my yard has no thrones and its bark is smooth. I was a little critical of it at first during the winter time as it seemed not to be such a great looking one but when it sprouted out leaves I changed my mind.
My wife has fond memories of her mom planting asters. She liked them as the butterflies really like the blooms. In most years, I have not seen them for sale any where. I am assuming that it is because they are blooming right now in the fall and Walmart pots them and can sell them. I got the very last one on the shelf, a few days ago.
I planted it in the front of the house crowding the petunias. I just won't plant petunias there next year and will let this spread. For some reason the entire front of the house is covered with red roses and this reddish petunias. Maybe next year I can add more blues or purples to the color scheme. I removed some previous owners plants that were just wild flower types with lots of foliage and minimal white blooms. One I saved and others I tossed in the bin.
I had to grab another piece from basement storage to place and carry my just picked tomatoes. i wasn't planning on picking but while out there I could see that they were ready. I at first end up putting all the tomatoes in my hands and against my chest. Then when I realize that I will have to make three trips with tomatoes and camera. In past years we would plant many tomato plants but this years six plants seem to be plenty. Even though they were planted late we will have all that we need and still will give some away to friends.
Sunday is a same kind of a day for us. We will get a meal after teaching Sunday School and be home the rest of the day. It is a cloudy, with sprinkles kind of day. It is typical y.. that happens when a hurricane hits the coast line.
Thank you for stopping by today. Have a great day.
Saturday, August 26, 2017
Saturday morning sunrise reveals the layer of clouds for it to hide behind as it raises up. It was so dull outside I was surprise to see this.
The coneflowers have rooted in well now and I am certain they will show up again next year, bigger and better. The older they get the more the colors fade.
It is Saturday and I do have things to do. I don't have the ambition to do them so we will see what happens. I will drink my coffee for now and watch "This Old House" rerun and think about my nest move.
I wish everyone to have a great weekend. Stay safe and well out there. Thanks for stopping by today.
Friday, August 25, 2017
I have been checking out the muskmelon at the grocery stores. I don't know when they are ripe and sometimes they are not when you buy them at the store. The color of this one looks more like a ripe melon.
Hidden from view are three muskmelons. The pumpkin sits in the center of them all. The leaves do a great job of covering up the melon. The leaves actually made it hard for me to get a final count on the melons. I haven't counted the pumpkins. I am not excited about them but maybe we can give them to the two neighbor kids across the street. It is too easy just to buy pumpkin pie filling in a can. No peeling, no boiling, and no smashing of pumpkin pulp. I bet it all taste the same.
We delivered these to my wife's friend yesterday and she immediately picked out the one she was going to eat for supper. There are a bunch of pear shaped yellow ones in the bottom of the bowl. When I went to pick them I didn't have a container and it was easier to raid the storage room supply of pottery. Of all of the varieties, one of them is watery and doesn't have a great taste. I will figure that out to know not to buy that one again.
This goldfinch was smaller than an adult one. I don't understand growth patterns of birds but I would have thought it would not be small once it had grown out its adult feathers. Between the finches and the hummingbirds our one window is continually busy with activity. The house finches are not visiting the thistle seed sock anymore. They must be living out in the woods where real seeds are growing on plants for them to eat.
The patio below the deck really is a great place for me to work. I still have to stop working if it starts to rain as the slotted floor of the deck drips down on me and whatever I am working on at the time.
We are having a second day of clouds. It has kept it cooler and is pleasant when outside. I took a quick trip to the old place and completed a couple of things. I did see a flock of white penguins earlier this week while traveling over the Saylorville Lake bridge. I can see two flocks of them off in a distance but there are no roads to that area for picture taking. Pelicans migrate south through Iowa but can stop to rest and feed for a couple of weeks before moving further south.
Thanks for checking in on my blog today. Have a great Friday and enjoy the weekend.
Thursday, August 24, 2017
I had a monarch visit the flowers yesterday. I really had not seen any all summer out there in the garden or yard. It seems to be jumpy to get a good wings open shot. This particular shot shows a wonderful background of colors and shapes. I was in the middle of a project and just stopped work and went to get the camera. I have learned to take photos when the butterflies are there because they don't stay for very long.
I don't see honey bees out on the zinnias but I do see lots of bumblebees. The get irritated with the painted lady butterflies when the start darting in and out on the flowers. The bees are not threatened but the appear distracted when the butterflies are there.
I wasn't expecting more rain but anything that we get will be appreciated. I haven't had to water anywhere yet but am thinking I might spot water some of the front yard. We are hearing predictions that our fall is going to have some high temperatures.
I did see a male hummingbird a few days ago with a very red band on its neck. I have not seen him again. I am hoping that he shows up again when I have my camera in hand. The band is seen when it reflects from a certain angle of light. The females definitely do not have any of those markings. I am suspecting that I have them nesting in the blue spruce in the yard.
We have errands to run today and will be meeting with my wife's friend for lunch. She wants to show us her new apartment set up and is going to feed us coffee ice cream. I have not heard of that flavor of ice cream but I am all in for trying it out. I drink plenty of coffee all day so maybe I can start eating ice cream coffee all day too. We are hazy and gray this morning but I am sure the sun will come out and we will warm up by noon.
Thank you for stopping by today. I wish you all to have a good day. See you tomorrow.
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
The sky seems to be out of the news again as the moon and the sun quit showing off. Our two inch rain was such a surprise and so welcomed. I dug plants at the old place yesterday and the ground was soggy. I have not experienced that for a long time. The grass seems to be coming back a little and I can now mow again at the new place. I did mow yesterday at the old place but that hadn't been mowed for three or four weeks. I still had areas where I wasn't mowing grass but the tops of a few weeds.
The success of its survival will depend on its ability to get water back into the roots and stems. It is on watchful eye by me as I just noticed it has a flower head developed and I would like to see it bloom.
I have not measured them but I am certain that they are at least twelve feet tall. With them being propped back up straighter, the three seem to be having a conversation. I do know that it will be normal for the heads to weigh down the plant and all of them will soon be bending over more.
I am glad I picked this bargain bin item up as it will prove to be a great rose. It is closer to being a real rose with the multi petaled bloom. It still is not completely opened but should be some time today. I mentioned earlier that I cut it way back and watered it frequently. It did respond to the care and now has many buds on it. The real test of course for Iowa gardeners is to see if it will winter over for spring blooms.
I am concerned that I have strayed from having a good variety of things on the blog. I have a shelf project going on and I have other things going on outside. I didn't post a single zinnia today and that is probably a good start for change.
Thanks for stopping by today. This photo reminds me that I need to fill the feeder again. Have a great day.