Monday, June 16, 2014

Just Hangin' With the Wildlife

It was a busy weekend at this little place here, but not much of interest to write about.  Hoeing weeds in the garden, replanting my peas (sometimes you just gotta till it under and start again--a few pea plants in all of six double rows made that area just not worth weeding, so I had DH hit the pea patch with the tiller and I replanted them in hopes of better germination this time), splitting and stacking wood for this winter. . .

Mowing the lawn and the paths in the garden, as well as the perimeter path around the property. Planting a few annuals in the flower beds. Grilling and chilling with some burgers and some micro brews out by the fire ring. . .

It was a pretty quiet weekend, and we got a lot of work done.

DD2 had gone with me when I went shopping on Friday, and she talked me into the annuals that I bought.  I did need a few to dress up the front flowerbed and the flowerbed in front of the propane tank now that the early season flush of perennials is just about over.  Next come the day lilies and the Asiatics, then there isn't a whole lot of blooming things other than some salvia and black-eyed Susans (called brown-eyed Susans around here, as one of my grandmother's was named Susan and she had brown eyes. . .) to carry the floral show through until it's time for the mums in the fall.  Hence a few pansies and petunias sprinkled in here and there for interest. Plus I needed marigolds to put in the garden amid my tomato plants to ward off tomato worms.

Anyway, DD2 was admiring the hanging baskets of annuals at the store, and I happened to mention that I had an old, empty hanging basket in the barn that she could use to make her own arrangement.  We also have potting soil, so why buy a basket and dirt just to get the pretty flowers when we could buy her choice of flowers (on sale, of course) and she could make her own personalized basket.  She immediately chose three different types of annuals she wanted to make her very own basket with, a combination that would be much more colorful that anything ready-made at the store.

Creating that living floral arrangement took her an hour or so this weekend.  She hung it on the (previously empty) shepherd's hook in the front yard.  About five minutes later, she declared it 'needed something to balance it out', as my shepherd's hook is the kind that can hang two things, not just one.  It didn't take her long to rummage around in my collection of 'haven't used it in years but can't quite get rid of it' items out in the barn and come back with the hummingbird feeder.  She proceeded to wash that up, look up a recipe for homemade hummingbird food (4:1 water and sugar, plus a little red food coloring), and once the feeder was filled, hang it opposite her basket of flowers.

Within a few hours a bluebird was drawn to the colors now hanging from the shepherd's hook.  It added even more color while it perched for a few minutes, checking things out.

By the next morning several hummingbirds had discovered the feeder.  I was able to get a picture of one, later in the day.  It appears to be a female ruby-throated hummingbird.

Looks like DD2 needs to whip up another batch of hummingbird food.

We even had a deer come in about 50 yards from the fire ring, lay down in the shade of the big oak tree and just watch us for a while.

Have I ever mentioned how much we love living at this little place here?

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