Sunday, July 18, 2010

Mid-Summer Life & Observations

We are busy and summer is flying by so this blog post is a mishmash of some of what we've been up to and observed over the last week. Steve spent some time at Brown's Lake Bog, one of the properties he is assuming responsibility for as steward, and spotted this orange fungus on a downed cherry tree. We're not sure on this id, but love the color.

We ordered 20 lbs of tart cherries from Michigan through a local farm to take advantage of summer's bounty and canned some for jam and froze the rest for now. We can never have too many tart cherries. Look at those beautiful preserves!

Cicadas are emerging, singing, mating and being consumed as evidenced in the photo below. This little guy met his demise most likely in the beak of a bird, but is now living in the higher energy level of his predator. Both wings and six legs pictured - pretty cool.

The garden is faring pretty well though it took quite a pummeling last night with an intense thunderstorm we experienced. I found Steve's Red Seneca corn lying flat on the ground this morning with many other plants, but this afternoon I will work to support the plants I didn't work on earlier. The zinnia colors are even better than before. Bees and butterflies are loving the blooms...

Bees are also loving the corn blossoms. As I tied the unbroken corn up this morning, the bees were on it immediately. I believe this is a female carpenter bee.

Meet our friendly visitor...a young robin. This little bird, as well as a mated pair of cardinals, call our backyard home most of the time.

This juvenile robin's coolness entitles him a place on our blog, but his antics push him over the top. Check out his poses...

Yep, quite the norm for this little guy. He sits this way for minutes, sometimes upwards of 10 minutes, on end. Any thoughts??

Visitors...Jennifer's sister and family visited and we enjoyed all sorts of fun adventures...walking, cooking, antiquing, crafting and here passing along the knitting tradition. Whitney is learning to knit and is proving to be a super fast learner!

And finally, more nature observations. While enroute to some appointments out of town this weekend, we stopped and took a hike (we always have to fit that in!) and noticed this fruiting shrub intermixed with some blackberries. Many of the ripe blackberries ended up in our mouths while we looked closer at this shrub. The leaves are opposite so we're thinking some sort of viburnum or related species. We would appreciate your thoughts!

A native pasture rose...look at those beautiful blooms.

Interested in gardening for wildlife or wondering about your lawn? Check out this really great write up and pass it along.



  1. Looking at your Vibernum and getting with Dr. Rothrock we, given the limits of a photo, feel it may be V. recognitum (if the petioles > 1.2 cm and infl. petioles are >5cm) or maybe V. rafinesquianum (if the petioles are < 1.2 cm and infl. petioles up to 5cm) But, leaning more towards the recognitum.

  2. Busy busy! Great photos! I love your little robin, how funny. . .

    We had a great time with you last week!

  3. I looks like an arrowwood viburnum to me (Viburnum dentatum)...


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