While our friends out east deal with the wind and water from Hurricane Irene, here in our southwest Michigan summertime "the living is easy". A short stroll through the yard revealed a number of interesting items to share with you. C'mon!
Down on the septic prairie, the prairie dock (Silphium terebinthinaceum) is in glorious bloom. How I wish the entire mound was covered in these plants this time of year!
The leaves are impressively large and rough as sandpaper. When I first saw them I was convinced the plant was a weed. But when it sends up a red stalk...
...of these bright, dancing daisy flowers, well nothing is cheerier! Just look at them!
I hope they're going to set seeds and spread up the mound for next summer.
Now we take a peek into the barn and find Barnard resting in the dog crate. I tried to get Barnard fixed this week, but it turned out he was broken -- in the form of an upper respiratory infection that must heal before he can have surgery. So he's been taking it easy in the barn, sneezing and sleeping.
He's a little bored. You know how it is when you have a cold. (BTW, he does NOT use that box for his bathroom needs. I still have not discovered how he's taking care of that part of his hygiene. Am moderately concerned to figure that out!)
The chickens are outside in their run, which is full of tall weeds giving them shelter from any predators. They just love to take a dust bath in the sun. I'm really happy that they're getting daily fresh air again.
Ulani waits patiently outside the barn door when I go in. As a known chicken killer, she's not allowed inside.
Peeking into the backyard I saw this lovely swallowtail on a clover plant. I only snapped this one picture before it flew off. Then, looking back across the field behind us, I saw some white movement in a tree. Suddenly I realized an egret was flying directly towards the barn!
There it is! Need help?
Lately I've seen one Great Blue Heron hanging around with six egrets in various field pools. They always startle me, and I wish my camera could do more zooming. But seeing them in person is the most magical thing and I always stop whatever I'm doing, or slam on the brakes, so that I can enjoy them. Before long the birds will begin their migration, though one heron remains here year round. Until then, I'll keep my eyes open.
Hope you enjoyed our little stroll around Busy Solitude Farm. Come back again!
I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself than be crowded on a velvet cushion. -- Thoreau
There are days when solitude is a heady wine that intoxicates you with freedom, others when it is a bitter tonic, and still others when it is a poison that makes you beat your head against the wall. -- Colette
I hold this to be the highest task for a bond between two people: that each protects the solitude of the other. -- Rilke
As innocent as a new-laid egg. -- W. S. Gilbert
Raising children is like being pecked to death by chickens. --Anonymous, but my mother gave it to me!
Language...has created the word "loneliness" to express the pain of being alone. And it has created the word "solitude" to express the glory of being alone. --Paul Johannes Tillich
Life begins when you plant a garden. -- Chinese proverb
The great omission in American life is solitude...that zone of time and space, free from the outside pressures, which is the incubator of the spirit. --Marya Mannes
If you were born lucky, even your rooster will lay eggs. -- Russian proverb
When the superficial wearies me, it wearies me so much that I need an abyss in order to rest. --Antonio Porchia
Cocks may crow, but it's the hen that lays the eggs. -- Attr. Margaret Thatcher
I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude. -- Henry David Thoreau