Wednesday, August 17, 2011


First off, thanks to everyone who commented yesterday.  Nature in the raw sometimes is very raw and harsh.  I just want to know why...  

On the stitching front, I'm continuing with birds.  This is a pattern (with silks) by Theresa Venette of Shakespeare's Peddler.  I already had the Pearled Barley linen needed, so we are off to the races with this one!

It's Wednesday...are you ready for a Virtual Walk?

It was lovely yesterday...warmer than past few days. 
In mid-August, the Thugs and the Invaders rule supreme.  

Lots of dandelions in bloom...

and the Himalayan Blackberries are ripening.

We are adrift in thistle seed...

..and Tansy Ragwort a toxic invasive - harmful to horses and cattle.

At least the Bumbles can find good use for the Bull Thistles.

I did find a couple of interesting things on my walk...

Remember my endless Iris photos in May?  Here's the seed pod of the Iris, split open and the brown-black round seeds on the left-center are ready to spill out. 

This is the Common Snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus). The flowers are pink or white, bell-shaped, Fruit is white, berry-like, each with 2 seeds and hangs through winter after leaves fall.  The fruit is inedible and considered poisonous by some. It grows in moist to dry forests, shady to open slopes, at low to mid elevations.  The funny thing is that as kids we used to collect Snowberries, but never to eat - we called them Poison Berries - I think because they were ghostly white - turns out we were right! 

One of our oaks is getting quite a collection of galls.  These are called Oak Apple Galls I suppose because of their size.  These are large (1- to 2-inch diameter) rounded growths that are filled with a spongy mass. A single wasp larva is located in a hard seed-like cell in the center. Galls are usually found on the petioles or midribs of leaves. They will dry to a brown, paper thin wall. While large and spectacular, they cause no measurable harm.  

This Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium) has a nice display of purple berries.  The fruit is edible, though I've never tried!

Our largest seasonal creek has pools of standing water.  Many years it is bone-dry by mid-August, but as we've had such a cool and wet Spring and early Summer, though the water is not flowing, it is available for the deer and other critters!

I hope you enjoyed today's walk.


Siobhan said...

I like your new WIP! Very cute. I also like Theresa's "I love the birds" design. I want to stitch that sooner rather than later.

I enjoyed the walk... and I learned what those wispy things are that I see on my daily walk! I see the thistle seed everywhere but didn't know what the name was. Thanks!

Mindi said...

I know this is a really old post, but I followed your link to it to read about the galls. Really interesting, I've never seen them before. As for the Oregon grapes, I've heard they're fairly tart, but I've seen jam made out of them.