Visit With Daughter and Family

Hello everyone! I hope this post finds you well. My daughter and her family came up for a visit this afternoon (Saturday). I finally got to see my new granddaughter, Allison, in person. This first photo is priceless. It is like she is saying, “Who is that old fart?”

 

As I suspected would happen, Melissa wanted me to hold the baby… It doesn’t look like she was any too happy to meet grandpa.

 

Melissa thought I should smile, so I did my best. Allison is thinking I am faking it…

 

I am thinking I should have cut my hair so we would both be bald. To early to tell if she has Miller ears… Melissa does but she is covering them up. Her brother, Nathan, is balder than I am, but he also has Miller ears. He is in Indiana now.

 

There was another photo, but by then Allison had enough and was beginning to get somewhat squirmy. She got this weird look on her face and I wasn’t sure if she was going to poop or cry.

I intended to take photos of Paul and his two daughters, Starr and Lakendra, but I forgot.

Jade, the cat that occupies the house, hid and was nowhere to be found. BUT the little black tom kitten (with no name) eagerly accepted Lakendra’s friendship and came in the house to play. I thought that was odd since he isn’t hardly ever around anyone but me but he took up with the little girl… He even let her pick him up and carry him around. I was to busy watching and didn’t take photos… GEEZ!

Little Bit was down at the barn but came up later when I filled the food pans. She was not interested in strangers at all. Then I took the piece of bamboo with yarn tied to it to try and get her to come in. While she did want the toy, she didn’t want to come into a house with strangers. She said, “the last stranger you took me to a few days ago ended up with me getting spayed.”

After they left, Jade was still MIA. I looked everywhere for her and could not find her. I couldn’t imagine where such a large cat could be hiding since all the bedroom doors were closed. Finally, I looked under my bed and there she was. She must have been in my bedroom before they came and then hid so I wouldn’t bring her out to meet the family. She still didn’t come out until I was eating dinner then she had to look the place over to make sure the coast was clear.

Well, that’s it for this post. I couldn’t very well use it for a Silent Sunday and I already did the Six On Saturday. I wonder what I will come up with for Silent Sunday?

Until next time, continue to stay positive, being safe, and always finding things to be thankful for.

 

Six on Saturday: 2-22-20

American Robin (Turdus migratorius)

Hello everyone! I hope this Six on Saturday post finds you all well. The weather continues to be weird but all is well regardless. I filled the bird feeder yesterday afternoon but this morning a lot of ground feeders were looking for food. So, I went outside and sprinkled some on the ground under the feeder. Several species of sparrows and the Dark-Eyed Junco will go to the tube feeder but they prefer eating off the ground or even the at the open feeder. I didn’t have much luck taking bird photos this morning because the birds I wanted photos of kept flying off. There is too much going on in the front yard to allow them to relax.

#1-A few American Robin (Turdus migratorius) have been here all winter but there are a lot more now. They don’t normally eat birdseed and the ground is pretty much frozen. They seemed a little bewildered hopping around looking at the ground hoping a worm would emerge… They often complain about bullying from the other birds, but with a name like Turdus

 

Purple Finch male (Haemorhous purpureus)

#2-Several Purple Finch (Haemorhous purpureus) males were squabbling this morning but I finally got this good shot of one at the feeder. I noticed there were several extra-large female sparrows feeding then realized they were Purple Finch females. DUH!

 

Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)

#3– Talk about a bird that is hard to photograph! A single Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor) was so excited it couldn’t sit still. It would fly down to the ground then back to the tree, preen its feathers, then fly to the feeder, then to the ground… GEEZ! I don’t know how many photos I took of it and they were all even more blurry than this one.

 

White-Breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)

#4-The White-Breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) was happily playing around on the tree most of the time. It seems to prefer seeds from the ground and the open feeder but on occasion will also go to the tube feeder. It seems like it prefers being upsidedown as well… Sometimes I have seen several of them fairly close together in the elm trees but only one (or one at a time) comes to feed. I have several good photos but this one is the best I could do this morning.

 

Bird’s Eye Speedwell (Veronica persica)

#5-The Bird’s Eye Speedwell (Veronica persica) are the first wildflowers to bloom. There are thousands and they are VERY tiny. I had to use a magnifying glass to get this photo. A very similar species, Wayside Speedwell (Veronica polita), looks so similar I am not sure how to tell them apart. One supposedly has slightly smaller flowers, but I bet if you look the two side by side you may still be confused… Their fruits are different but there aren’t any yet since they have just started flowering. Ummm… Steyermark’s Flora of Missouri says V. persica flowers April-June and V. polita March-June. Hmmm… So, maybe this species is V. polita instead of V. persica. Photos of the stems on Missouri Plants shows they are kind of reddish on V. persica and greener on V. polita. The plants in my yard have green stems. Well, GEEZ! I was hoping for V. persica because I like the name “Bird’s Eye” better than “Wayside”. I did notice their flowers fall off very easily, too. Did I mention their flowers are VERY tiny?

 

Mother of Thousands (Kalanchoe daigremontiana)

#6-The Kalanchoe daigremontiana (Mother of Thousands) flowers are now opening! This plant was in the back bedroom but the top of it was touching the shelf above it. A couple of days ago I looked at it and two of the buds had opened so I moved it to my bedroom. I have had this plant for several years and have whacked its stem in half many times to regrow it. If you don’t do this once a year the plant gets very leggy and its leaves are smaller. Cut the stem and the leaves grow HUGE.

Some information online sys this plant rarely flowers indoors and they are insignificant. Hmmm… I definitely wouldn’t call this inflorescence insignificant…

That’s all I have for this on Six on Saturday post. If you wish to participate in Six on Saturday posts, be sure to read the Six On Saturday-a participants guide from The Propagator.

I was busy working on the blog this week, writing wildflower pages and uploading photos. Sorry I didn’t read your posts so I will have to do some catching up…

Until next time… Be safe, stay positive, and be thankful. GET DIRTY whenever you have a chance!

 

Six On Saturday: February 15, 2020

Cylindropuntia imbricata (Tree Cholla)

Hello everyone! I hope this Six On Saturday post finds you all well. We had another snow this week followed by VERY cold temperatures for a few days. It was 1° F when I went to bed Thursday night. Today is the beginning of a heatwave and the forecast says the high today will be 44°F (but cloudy) and 52 on Sunday and Monday. The rest of the week will be in the 30’s with a chance of rain on Monday.

#1 is a photo of the Cylindropuntia imbricata (Tree Cholla) that is patiently waiting for spring. It has been fairly mild, temperature wise, this winter so the Tree Cholla hasn’t turned a maroon color like it does when it is very cold.

I needed to go to town and I could hear geese from the park. So, I decided to head that direction.

 

#2. On the way to the park, I decided to take a photo f the front pasture looking toward the twin Mulberry Trees. A couple of years ago one of them started leaning… There is an old hedge post growing at the base of the tree that is leaning from an old fence. I think that is the only thing holding it up.

 

#3. There were a lot of Canadian Geese on the park lake which is still partially frozen. They were really squawking!

 

#4. As I drove by the hardware store, I saw one of the Amish horses tied up waiting for its owner. Their horses work very hard even in the coldest weather. When I was a kid, this used to be the Gerbes Grocery Store. After Gerbes closed it was Sav-More, then Wischard’s Grocery. There was a Gambles hardware store on Main Street when I was growing up but after the owner’s retired another resident bought the business and it became a True Value. Then it caught on fire… The owners bought the old grocery store and moved True Value here. When I moved back here in 2013 it was a Do It Best.

 

#5. The local Golden Valley Clinic, which is part of the hospital in Clinton, is building on. It is good to have a clinic for the community residents and the new addition will allow more services.

 

The above photo is another view of the clinic from Benton Street. The church I attend is next to the clinic and we share the parking lot. The church owns the parking lot between the clinic and the church, so the clinic bought part of it for this addition. It has reduced the size of the parking lot so adjustments will have to be made. When I was growing up, we had as many as five doctor’s offices in town. Over the years they have retired (a few died while still in practice) so it is great to have this clinic.

A lot of changes have taken place in this small community, not all good. Like most smaller communities struggling to survive. Industry closes up and people have to drive to work outside of town leaving businesses to also close. Many business owners were forced to retire that had stores for MANY years because they were starting to sink their hard-earned money into their business. New businesses would open only to not be able to make it. So, our once thriving Main Street is a mixture of struggling small businesses, empty buildings, and a few lots where old stores have been torn down. There are a few, however, that seems to be doing well, or at least well enough to be in business.

 

Echinopsis mirabilis (Flower of Prayer)

FAREWELL, MY FRIEND… 

#6. R.I.P. Echinopsis Mirabilis (Flower of Prayer). I brought this cactus home from Lowe’s on March 29, 2019 and it rewarded me with several flowers over the summer. Information says it is a fairly short-lived species but I was hoping our companionship wouldn’t have ended so soon. Not long after I brought inside for the winter I noticed it was ailing. I had put it in a new pot which I am quite sure didn’t lead to its downward spiral. I repot a lot of cactus in the winter and have never had any problems. In fact, I have lost very few cactus. Maybe I can find another one in 2020…

 

Sanseveria ehrenbergii ‘Samurai Dwarf’

BONUS! OK, I seem to always take an extra photo for Six on Saturday. This bonus is about the new plant I found at Wal-Mart on January 8. First, it took great debate about whether to buy it or not because I had very little money. If it had only been a few dollars it would have been no problem, but this plant was NOT cheap. I am not saying I haven’t paid more for a single plant, because I have when I had the funds. One time I carried around a magnificent Kalanchoe beharensis for an hour at Lowe’s when I lived in Mississippi debating whether or not I should pay the price. I had friends with me who said I deserved it, so I brought it home. Only to leave it with another friend, along with over 100 other plants, when I moved back here in 2013.

The thing with this Sanseveria that made it so irresistible was that it is so weird. It is the dwarf form of Sanseveria ehrenbergii called ‘Samurai Dwarf’. Of course, the label from Rocket Farms just says Sanseveria ‘Samurai’ which is incorrect.

While I was at Wal-Mart, I resisted other cactus that were available. One reason was because of lack of funds and the other were the labels… The labels just said “cactus” and they weren’t from Altman Plants. They were from some other grower that didn’t even remotely bother to have any kind of tag with a proper name, even if it was incorrect. I am not venting at all, in fact I am laughing as I write this. I am thankful the plants weren’t labeled correctly so I didn’t bring any home and decided to bring home the Sanseveria instead. 🙂

I did renew my domain name and my premium WordPress account will be renewed in March. I have to keep premium because I amusing to much “space” for a free blog. It would be interesting if I could figure out how to make some income through my blog but I don’t want a bunch of annoying ads, though. I go to a lot of sites I am trying to read and the page bounces around while the ads load…

If you wish to participate in Six on Saturday posts, be sure to read the Six On Saturday-a participants guide from The Propagator.

Well, that’s about all I have to say for now. I could keep rambling but I think I have said enough. All is well here and I hope you stay safe, remain positive, and be thankful. I know there is some bad weather where some of you live and some of you aren’t 100% well. I keep you in my prayers and hope I am in yours as well.

 

Six On Saturday-Signs of Spring

Chaenomeles sp. (Flowering Quince) on 2-8-20.

Hello everyone! I hope this post finds you well. I woke up early this morning for a Saturday and couldn’t go back to sleep. I had taking photos for a Six On Saturday post on my mind so I got out of bed at 9. I got up, made coffee, fed the cats, and checked to see what the temperature was. 23°F. The sun is shining bright today and it looked GREAT! I went outside to take photos and it sure didn’t feel like 23°. By noon the National Weather Service says it was 35° and AccuWeather says 31. I always check several sites to see which one I like the best.

Here we go…

#1-Chaenomeles sp. (Flowering Quince).

Yesterday I went to a friend’s house to put a new battery in her smoke detector upstairs and noticed the Quince in her yard has started to leaf out. That triggered a Six On Saturday post right then. So, this morning I went right to the Quince in my yard to see what it was doing. Unfortunately, it hadn’t leafed out near as much as the one in Connie’s yard and all the close-up photos were not presentable. There are several species of Quince that might grow here and I have not figured this one out yet. It is a very old bush, likely planted by my grandparents in the 1960’s. Many older homes in town have Quince bushes in their yards.

*UPDATE: Thanks to Tony Tomeo I now know the Flowering Quince is a Chaenomeles species and not Cydonia. Cydonia species are fruiting Quince and Chaenomeles species are flowering Quince. I changed the name already… 

I also noticed one of the Lilac bushes was really getting with it.

 

Lamium amplexicaule (Henbit) or Lamium purpureum (Dead Nettle) on 2-8-20.

#2) Lamium amplexicaule (Henbit) or Lamium purpureum (Dead Nettle).

I am not sure which of the two species this photo is of since they are both everywhere and growing together (for the most part). Their early leaves look so much alike you really can’t tell them apart. Truthfully, the Lamium started growing quite a while back so I am not sure if this counts as a sign of spring…

 

Phlomis ‘Edward Bowles’ under the pot on 2-8-20.

#3-Phlomis ‘Edward Bowles’.

Of course, I had to look under the pot covering the Phlomis ‘Edward Bowles’. Hmmm… It didn’t even turn brown this winter. I covered it a while back because of paranoia. I am going to say it again… “I HOPE IT FLOWERS THIS YEAR.”

 

Achillea millefolium by the chicken house on 2-8-20.

#4) Achillea millefolium (Yarrow).

Of course, the Achillea millefolium are growing new leaves. Only very cold temps make them completely disappear and as soon as they get a chance they send up new leaves to see if the coast is clear.

 

Heuchera ‘Venus’ on 2-8-20.

#5-Heuchera (Coral Bells).

Well, what can I say? I got excited when I saw the Heuchera growing new leaves. They had been covered with snow off and on so I hadn’t checked them earlier. Heuchera are another perennial that will start growing earlier than you might expect during a mild winter. I had to take photos of all of the Heuchera which would completely screw up Six On Saturday. So, I numbered them 5.1-5.4. I hope you don’t mind. 🙂 It’s just when the snow melts to reveal signs of life I get somewhat trigger happy with the camera.

#5.1-Heuchera ‘Venus’.

The above photo is the Heuchera ‘Venus’. Its new leaves have a completely different color than when they mature to a silvery-green with darker green veins.

 

Heuchera ‘Obsidian’ on 2-8-20.

#5.2-Heuchera ‘Obsidian’.

The Heuchera ‘Obsidian’ reportedly has the darkest leaves of the Heuchera cultivars but that depends a lot on the light. Oh, the Chickweed is also growing, which is definitely a sign of spring…

 

Heuchera ‘Palace Purple’ on 2-8-20.

#5.3-Heuchera ‘Palace Purple’.

The Heuchera ‘Palace Purple’ is ready for spring. Its leaves are nearly as dark as ‘Obsidian’ during the summer and the plant and leaves get much larger.

 

Heuchera ‘Lime Rickey’ on 2-8-20.

#5.4-Heuchera ‘Lime Rickey’.

I really like the chartreuse leaves of the Heuchera ‘Like Rickey’ and it is very good to see it growing new leaves. It is such a great plant to brighten up a shady bed.

 

Hosta ‘Potomac Pride’ on 2-8-20.

#6-Hosta ‘Potomac Pride’.

While I was photographing the Heuchera I looked under the leaves to see what the Hosta were doing. While I expected to see nothing, I was pleasantly surprised. I first checked the Hosta ‘Abiqua Drinking Gourd’ and saw a sprout but I didn’t take a photo. Then I checked Hosta ‘Potomac Pride’ and had to take a photo. I didn’t check the rest because I knew that would lead to more photos and this Six On Saturday post would be all out of whack. Seeing the Hosta sprouting so early is definitely weird…

 

Kalanchoe daigremontiana (Mother of Thousands) on 2-8-20.

BONUS-Kalanchoe daigremontiana (Mother of Thousands).

Hmmm… Let me explain myself. First, I took a photo of this Kalanchoe before I went outside thinking I would use it for this post. By the time I was finished outside, I had too many photos. Since I already went overboard and sort of broke the rules with the Heuchera, I thought I just as well add a bonus photo.

I have been checking the buds on this Kalanchoe daigremontiana almost every day to see if the flowers have opened. I first noticed the buds on January 20 and since then they have grown but not opened. GEEZ! There are also more buds at the two upper stem nodes. I would say leaf nodes, but some experts say its leaves aren’t really leaves (since leaves don’t produce offsets from its margins). Anyway, I am patiently waiting…

That’s all I have to talk about at the moment, or at least it is time to stop. If you wish to participate in Six on Saturday posts, be sure to read the Six On Saturday-a participants guide from The Propagator.

Until next time, be safe, stay positive, and always be thankful. Your comments and “likes” are always appreciated.

 

New Granddaughter

Hello everyone! I hope this post finds you all well. I just wanted to let you know my daughter has her first baby.

 

Meet Allison Marie. She was born at 12:30 PM (Jan. 28). She weighed 6 pounds, 2 ounces and was 19 inches long. I had to get out the tape measure for that one… I think she looks like grandpa already.

I think I have four step grandkids (1 boy and 3 girls) but this is my first from my gene pool.

That’s all I have to say for now. I have to get back to work updating pages and writing new ones for the wildflowers I identified over the summer. I still have about 120 new pages to write. I had to check out Steyermark’s Flora of Missouri again (all three volumes).

OH, one more thing. I had an enormous spike in stats today. 490 views! Usually about 60-110, more or less, from about as many visitors. Today, only 42 visitors but 490 views. What is really strange is that 438 views were from the Philippines… No comments or like’s so I have no clue who the culprit is/was. I am sure tomorrow will be back to normal but it would be interesting to have stats that good every day.

I’m finished now.

Until next time, be safe, stay positive, and always be thankful.