Sunday, June 9, 2024

Another Duh Moment

I’m having fun with a plant identification app on my phone. It’s called PlantNet and seems to be extremely accurate. Just this morning I decided to take an image of one of my shade tree’s fruits and realized a very silly mistake. It’s not a buckeye tree at all but a common horse chestnut. ~shakes head~ Somehow my memory got twisted around over the decades.

To my surprise, PlantNet also identified this
as the peculiar squirting cucumber...

Then again, I feel somewhat vindicated after stumbling upon this article. Horse chestnut and buckeye trees resemble one another as they’re in the same genus. And there is so much more I’m learning!

Fun facts:

My tree is the red variety, meaning it has rosy flowers versus white. A woman who saw it in the spring of 2023 not only pulled over to inquire about it, she brought her mother over this past April.

And it’s a hybrid between the red buckeye (!) and white chestnut.

The English call the nuts ‘conkers’. And I understand why after being pelted during that very windy day. lol Thank heaven they’re small and quite soft.

A tasty fall treat for deer, the seeds are toxic to most mammals, including horses. Thanks to this article from the UK I learned two things about the name.

One, a fallen leaf creates a horseshoe shaped scar on the twig, complete with what look like nail holes. I’ll have to look for this come autumn.

And before modern veterinary medicine, crushing conkers released a medicinal compound that, while toxic to smaller animals, helped relieve horses suffering a cough.

Last but not least, harvested seeds are supposedly easy to cultivate over winter. I may have to try this if only for fun.

The entire tree gets covered by these...

Weren’t so-called primitive peoples incredibly inventive? Do you think a horse chestnut sapling would make a nice gift?


Saturday, June 8, 2024

A Teeny, Tiny Flying Gem

This morning I did some garden chores and spotted this damsel fly. What a lucky discovery; most folks (my husband included) would never spot such a tiny creature.

Here is a photo, as well. I apologize for the blurriness.

Doesn’t that blue color pop? Can you imagine being such a minute yet vibrant and valuable being?


Thursday, June 6, 2024

Gardening Fun

These are some random photos I’ve accumulated recently. I hope you enjoy them.
A Cool Fungus
A Tropical Tree Given By a Friend
Wild Strawberries Discovered Beneath
Invasive Prickly Lettuce Plants
Not From My Garden, an Interesting
Vegetable Drawer Discovery
These Nonviable Buckeye Tree Fruits
Pelted Me a Week or So Ago
Yuccas Planted by Former Homeowners
3 + Decades Ago (!) Continue Thriving 
What a Vibrant Insect Relaxing on a Rose

Have harvested vegetables ever sprouted in your home? Did you feel safe eating them?


Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Enchanting Abandoned Witch House Of A Famous Artist - What Happened Here?

Since this video is long, I watched it at a higher rate of speed. Old, abandoned structures fascinate me and I felt my time well spent.

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Saved Again, and Again

Dear fellow blogger Andrew’s post reminded me of recent ways my (apparent) guardian angels have protected me. A few months ago I tripped over something (?) in our home. If a simple, flimsy plastic cat tent hadn’t broken my fall I’d have bashed my skull against the brick hearth.

A week or so later I slipped off the top step down into our garage. Somehow I didn’t fall onto the concrete. It seems friction from my elbow dragging against the wall stopped me. While there are only three stairs, I perceived some broken bones (or worse) before my sudden miraculous halt.

Who knows why I keep tripping over my own feet? Of course please disregard that rhetorical question. ~grin~ But do you believe (as my drunken self experienced falling down a friend’s full flight of stairs; don’t judge, it was decades ago) that insobriety curbing the instinctual urge to brace ourselves helps prevent injury?


Sunday, May 26, 2024

Three's Company

Upon returning from the grocery store this afternoon I was pleased to see Terra about a foot away from Dandelion on our bed. Several minutes later, Polly had joined her sister for a mutual grooming session. This development made us very happy.

Before I got up, Dani had settled on my side. We have the sweetest cats. And I can say the same about the three who lived here before passing away.

I like having my smart phone handy...

I took the next image a while back. This little unicorn tent sits on the guest bed. If Terra had a bushy tail like Polly’s I might assume there is just one cat in there.

I once feared the tent too small for a cat;
Obviously, I was wrong...

Can you see the second pair of kitty ears in the tent? Isn’t it funny that I sort of ‘photo bombed’ both of my own images?

Monday, May 20, 2024

A Strange Day

Our cat Dandelion woke me early this morning jumping on the bed seeking attention. After telling my husband, on his computer at the time, I returned to bed.

Ornery Terra later woke me by knocking my phone off the nightstand. To my shock, it was past 11:15! No wonder she wanted me up.

Discombobulated, I thought I might still be asleep and dreaming when my husband then told me about a derecho sweeping through the central United States. Unfortunately for those living in this weather pattern’s path, it’s very real and I wish them all the best.

On a lighter note, I opened a box just delivered. I turned around moments later and found the aforementioned kitty Dandelion sitting there.

Is that expression adorable or what?

Isn’t nature's force often either wondrous or terrible? On a different topic, did you know that the wonderful character actor Dabney Coleman passed away?

There’s a fabulous homage on the blog Shadow of a Doubt. By the way, I do not think the bubbles forming in the rain were caused by any chemicals but rather ideal conditions. It probably would not have happened had the guy who replaced our driveway done a better job years ago.