Articles (Blog)
Posted on March 17, 2020 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
I finally found something nice to write about, daffodils!!!  But I wasn't able to upload the picture.  Where's the sunshine in that?  No story without a picture.
I'll try another day, but right now I'm out of patience.  Sorry.
Posted on March 1, 2020 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
Our world was so pretty in the snow.  Even a scruffy ole sumac bush was beautiful.  
Posted on February 29, 2020 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
I would love to say we went for a walk yesterday, but we didn't. Too cold!!  It was beautiful, and we enjoyed the snow from inside.  
I did get a good picture from the deck, though.  The garden.  Thought you'd like to see it.  In a few months it will look totally different.  But it was pretty yesterday.
Our whole world was pretty in the snow!!!
Posted on February 10, 2020 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
Categories: General
I wish you could have hopped on the Flexible Flyer with me, and ridden it down Crabapple Lane.  It was fabulous!!  
We haven't had enough snow the past few years to get out the sled, but on Saturday we had 4-6 inches of beautiful snow!!!!   We got to sail down our road!!  
Going DOWN is great fun, but at our age, hauling the sled back UP is a bit of a chore.  But worth it!!  
We got in a few good runs, then decided that 30 minutes of fresh air and exercise was enough for one day.  Then, spent the rest of the day inside reading books and appreciating the snow from our cozy living room.
Hope you got to enjoy the snow.  Now, maybe we can start looking for signs of Spring.
Posted on February 9, 2020 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
Who knew that we were going to get this much snow yesterday?  
Wasn't it beautiful?  I hope you got to enjoy it.  We sure did!!!
I haven't really had anything to say lately, but SNOW!!!!!  That gives us all something to talk about.
The daffodils are coming up everywhere; but they really don't mind the snow.  It's normal for them to be emerging this time of year.  They'll be blooming soon.
Meanwhile, start looking for signs of Spring.  They should be happening soon.
Posted on January 4, 2020 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
Don't you love blue sky pictures?  Me too.  I especially love seeing Sycamores in winter poking their white branches up into the blue sky.
Platanus occidentalis.  I remember that because the leaves are as big as dinner plates, 6-10 inches across!   Well, no leaves now, but they are still quite distinctive.  
Sycamores are very large, growing up to 130 feet; some trees living 500-600 years!!!!  And they have this wonderful, mottled bark that flakes off like puzzle pieces, revealing yellowish or whitish underbark.  They also hold onto their hanging ball seed clusters almost all winter.  
They are easy to spot at 55 mph.  Just look up for white branches with decorations hanging all over them.  
I promised I'd be back...I just had to find something interesting to talk about.  
Posted on December 22, 2019 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
Categories: General
The winter solstice occurred last night at 11:20. The sun entered the sign of Capricorn, officially welcoming winter.  So I'm here to say HAPPY WINTER!!!
I'm having a little trouble finding things to blog about, but I haven't forgotten about you.  We're always on the lookout for interesting things in the neighborhood!  Check out the picture above.  
Not sure, since we didn't see the resident, but we think it's a hummingbird nest.  It's only about 2 inches in diameter. The bird book didn't give a size, but it said the nest is made of plant down, covered in lichens, bound with spider's silk, and located on a horizontal branch 10-20 feet above the ground.  I can't be sure, but I want it to be a hummingbird nest.  Anyway, thought you'd like to see our winter find.  
Hope you all have HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!  See you next year, 2020!!!
Posted on December 9, 2019 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
This is Mahonia aquifolium, also called Oregon holly grape.  It's not a holly, but the leaves look a lot like holly;   and it's not a true grape either; it's in the Barberry family.  It grows 2-5 feet tall, and is a nice border plant, or specimen plant.  This one is about 4 feet tall, and stands alone. It is beautiful.  
I've had my eye on this bush in Meeks Park for years.  It's near the bridge by the Tate Mill Wheel.  We notice it every time we walk in the park, because it is striking at every season.  Right now it has set next year's flower buds.  See the spiky buds?  They will open in early spring with clusters of bright yellow flowers, and in summer those flowers turn into bluish, black grapelike fruits.  You can't help but notice it then!!!
Last year the flowers opened early in March, then we had some freezing weather.  We saw that most of the flowers got frostbite, so there weren't many blue fruits on it last summer.
Everything I've read says the fruits are edible.  I've never tasted them, but I'll get back to you whenever I do.
Posted on December 6, 2019 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
This is the perfect time of year to see mistletoe in the trees.  
Look up, and if you see clumps of green in an otherwise bare tree, it's probably mistletoe.  There's a bunch in our neighborhood. Down in the meadow across from the haybale turkey, er... the haybale.  There's also some in one of Lee's trees;  that's where I took this picture.  And lots up top.  
I remember hearing stories of my grandmother shooting it out of the trees with a .22!!!  Can't imagine that, but I love the story.  
My favorite horticultural story is that the berries are sticky, and when birds eat the berries they have to clean their beaks of the sticky residue.  They scrape off the sticky mess on the branches of the trees, thus REPLANTING the seeds!  The ultimate gardeners!!
When we were in Kennesaw yesterday, we saw a short tree with a ton of mistletoe.  I took up-close pix.  Let's see if I can load that picture here for you to see.  Give me a minute........
OK 30 minutes....  Anyway this is what it looks like up close.  See the white berries?  
When we bring it into the house we make sure there are no berries on, cause they are poisonous, and we don't want Ranger to get ahold of any.  He's smart, but....we don't want to take any chances.
So that's mistletoe, look up!!  Hope you see some in your travels.
Posted on December 1, 2019 8:00 AM by Gerry Trout
Categories: Know your pets
And the word is:  crepuscular.  That's right:  crepuscular.  I don't know when you will ever get to use it, but we might, cause we have a cat.  And this word describes him perfectly.  Meet Ranger.  
Crepuscular refers to twilight.  Cats are notoriously crepuscular, active at dawn and dusk.  That's our Ranger, active beginning about 3:30 am, sleeping ALL day, then active again in the early evening.  We've seen this behavior for the last 15 years;  I just didn't know there was a word for it.  
Well, now I know, and you do too.
Learn something new every day!!!
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