Friday, March 27, 2015

Stripes and Flocks

I started Mosey 'n Me's "Folk Art Cat" back in November and it has not been part of my regular stitching rotation.  Last night I took it back out and stitched a couple of more stripes.

I received MUCH stitching encouragement from the Cat Crew.

While I still see a "V" of geese once in a while...

...I am much more likely to see a group of Turkey Vultures flying overhead.

My large group of Pine Siskins is still hanging out. In a couple of weeks when this Big Leaf Maple buds out I will not be able to see them as clearly.

I will still be able to hear the Siskins - they are noisy chatterboxes!

A group of 6 like this one can sound like 20 birds.

And look who was hanging out with them!
A female Lesser Goldfinch.

And she was not alone - she's on the bottom and the male Lesser is on the right. 

Last summer I had two or three pairs of Lessers.

I am hoping that will be the case again this summer.

Speaking of pairs...
My covey of Quail number seven - four guys and three gals. Now the covey has six members - 3 guys and 3 gals.  The seventh member - this bachelor has been banned and wanders by himself - lonely and more at risk... 

...from predators like this guy!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Here's the Foxy Finish

Design - "Smart as a Fox"
Designer - Birds of a Feather
Fabric - 30 cnt R & R Light Cappuccino
Fibers - GAST - 2 strands over 2 threads
Started - 15 March 2015
Completed - 24 March 2015

Here's my Sly Fox Finish.  Very pleased with him.  For some reason he looks pink in the photo when he is actually more foxy-coppery looking.

When I was at Down to Earth the other day, I had to take a look at their wonderful birdhouses and birdfeeders. A local woman makes the birdhouses and she is so very creative. I have purchased a number of her houses over the years. I'm really liking the one with the ladybug.

I need to count the number of houses I already have up.

Most of the Open Houses appear to be have good attendance!

Basic Brown Birds are the bane of an amateur birdwatcher.
It can be so difficult to figure out who the bird really is or to tell one BBB from another.

I just discovered that I'd been counting ALL my Sparrows as Song Sparrows like the one pictured above. And why is that a problem you might ask?

It is a problem only because at it turns out, I also have these cute Fox Sparrows! The Fox Sparrows have a darker head, and are plump with a white chest.  So in the future any bird counts I submit will reflect my Sparrow population more accurately!  Ooops!

That still leaves distinguishing the House Finches from Purple Finches.  For the time being I'm calling everyone a House Finch!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

March is Gentle as a Lamb

The fox is done and I've decided that the lamb is next.
We'll hope that the month of March ends "Gentle as a Lamb".

While we had some rain and wind this weekend, most days this month have been Lamb Mild rather than Lion Fierce.  Good walking weather!

It turns out that this is a good week to look at Trilliums.

My sister has several nice groups of Small Flowered Trillium (Trillium parviflorum) in her Dahlia Garden.

Lots of signs of Spring where ever you look. Most of the shrubs are trees have fat buds.

The Grand Hound's Tongue (Cynoglossum grande) continues to bloom apace.

And in the wettest areas of our property the Corn Lilies (Veratrum californicum) are popping up.

The Cow's Parsnip (Heracleum maximum) is noticeably larger each time I walk by.

I was too late this year to see the small pink and purple violets.  These white ones are the last of the three to bloom.

The candles on the pines are in great health.  Take a moment to look at the highly patterned bark of the young tree.

From bud to bloom in just a week - our native Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium). 

I do not know the name of this small shrub. I do know that it thrives along the banks of our seasonal creeks in dappled to deep shade. 

Take a moment to admire the vibrant green of the Osoberry leaves and their detailed veining.

Bright green Tree Moss (Leucolepis acanthoneuron . Despite its name it is more likely to be found on the ground, rotting logs, and tree bases rather than on the trees themselves.

I was pleased to see some Oregon Fawn Lilies (Erythronium oregonum). They will have a creamy white blossom, but for now I am content to admire their heavily mottled leaves.

The native Pacific Bleeding Heart (Dicentra formosa) is a pretty plant even before it blooms.

It won't be too long now until the first Blue Oregon Iris (Iris tenax) bloom. As these usually are finishing up at the end of May, it is clear that this mild winter has allowed them to bloom much earlier than usual. 

The Pacific Ninebark (Physocarpus capitatus) is leafing out. Later in the spring it will be covered with clusters of white flowers.  

I hope you enjoyed today's walk - we still have much to look forward to as March becomes April and April turns into May.   

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

March Plants and November Stitch

Cottage Garden Samplings "November's Chrysanthemum" has been languishing in my UFO for a couple of months now.  I worked on it last night and managed to stitch the alternating orange and brown banner on the top and the pumpkin and pie on the bottom.  I also frogged and fixed a couple of the leaves on the left.  This pattern has a busy border and I still have much to stitch including a couple of apple, corncobs, pumpkins, a cornucopia, and yet more autumnal leaves. 

Moving seasonally from November to March, my gardening efforts are displaying some color as are the local nurseries.  Let's join in the fun at the Maple Hill Hop and the Tuesday Garden Party.  Here's what I have to share:

First my own efforts.  I am buying Fuchsias and Primrose a few at a time, and doing a decent job of potting them up as I purchase. 

My Trillium 'Volcano' is the star of the front flowerbed.
(It lives in a cage so the deer do not demolish it.)

More color on the Front Porch.
This is the 2nd year for this pot of Daffodils.

I especially like blues and purples.

So I'm a big fan of Muscari.

Bright pinkish-red tulips.

More Front Porch color spots.

This Currant will soon be in bloom and the Hummingbirds will swarm the plant.

Some of our clumps of naturalized Daffodils are doing very well. 

This one is called "Passionale".

And what is a week without a trip to a plant nursery? 
Let's take a look at what Down to Earth had on display.

Four different birdbaths - I liked them all!

My sister took this sign seriously and purchased some seeds.

Interestingly patterned and colored garden bench.

Vertical gardening.

The Local Garden Forecast.

As many of you Loyal Followers are aware, I have a 'thing' for watering cans. Love the mix of metallic colors on these.

Chicken dishtowels.

Egg basket and chicken statue.

Very cool chicken Garden Art!

I came home with some Sedums, a Salvia, and several Fuchsias.
Now I need to get them in some dirt.  

And look at these beauties - a Martagon Lily, a Trillium, Lobelia, and Primrose. All gifts from my Mom.  In the ground (with some deer protection) they all must go too.

As you can see as soon the rain stops, I'll be happily busy outside!