Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A Walk in the Woods... and Mowing

Yesterday was an unexpected no-rain day, at least until evening. I took the chance to walk through our woods, hoping the rain would stay away, and see what wildflowers were blooming.

There were lots of various species of Cardamine in bloom...

 Quite a few Trillium were blooming, but many looked beat down by rain. This one managed to hide under fern leaves and stay more or less intact.

The Sessile Trilliums with their pretty spotted leaves were in bud, but not yet blooming.

There will be a lot of them open before long...

 Also not yet ready to bloom were the tiger lilies I wait forever and hopefully to see bloom before the slugs and/or deer eat them. This one has another couple of feet to grow upward before making buds.

 The cheery wood violets were plentiful.

And Oregon Forestsnails were happily munching along the forest floor. Rain is fine with them.

 Lots of Indian Plum blooming...

The first skunk cabbage was open in our little creek.

 The big creek, Agency, was a roaring torrent with a newly fallen tree across it.

 On my way back, I sat very still for sometime at our seasonal pond, watching the tiny underwater and on-top-of-the-water creatures. I sat so long, a turkey vulture came to investigate. I guess he wanted to know if I was ready to be eaten yet.

I decided it was time to stand up and walk. When I arrived back by the machine shed, it was still not raining and the grass was, amazingly, dry enough to mow. And very tall... thanks to wet days keeping me from mowing. So I happily climbed onto the one ride-around mower not in the repair shop. It would not start. I connected it to the battery charger, which sits nearby since most of our equipment needs frequent help.. .and called Johnny. He couldn't get it started either.

With one ride-around mower off for repairs and the other needing them, I was relegated to the gasoline push mower. And so I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening pushing it around the too-high grass which we have too much of. But I did get the paths around the flower beds plus the back yard mowed, just before the rain resumed. So the place looks a little more presentable.

Lots of daffodils are blooming, as can be seen in the photo above. Below, the horse wagon I had planted with bulbs is blooming.

I had planted the colorful small hyacinth and tulip bulbs on the side facing the barn and pond as that was the side I would see it from, since there was a fence and shrubbery on the house side. However, I had not considered that when they bloomed, the grass would be growing in front of their wagon bed and I would want to put the llamas in there to eat it. I surely don't need more grass to mow. However, the llamas would likely taste the flowers. So I put up a make-shift fence sure to be replaced by a horrified Johnny. And it was. We now have a lovely high fence on the barn and pond side of the bulb wagon. And I pruned back the shrubbery that was blocking the view from the house side. Plus Johnny moved the wagon, with the tractor, forward so I could see it from my office window.

As a result, the photo above was taken by aiming the camera through a hole in the fence wire. Next year, I'll plant the wee flowers on the other side of the bulb bed. Or maybe on both sides with the taller and later bulbs in the middle. In the photo below, you can see part of the new fence on the left.

 Today we have had a more usual on-again-off-again rain, so I am grateful for an entire day of no rain yesterday. And grateful that the afternoon rain today allowed me to come inside after an exhausting morning of hauling off, with Johnny's help, my enormous heaps of prunings that I have been creating in moments of minimal rain. And it allowed me to put the photos I took yesterday on the computer and add them to this journal of life on our soggy farm.

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