Monday, May 30, 2011

Swamp Critter


Do you see who I see?

David saw this little friend in the front of the yard this afternoon. We see raccoons often in the evening, but rarely in the middle of the afternoon.

He kept peeking over the retaining wall to see where we were
 and finally decided we were there to stay.
 He headed for the tree………….


And evidently the tree is hollow, because up he went,
into the middle of the tree!
We never know what we will see here on the Cypress Swamp.


Can you see his little ringed tail right at the top of the split?
Pretty cozy home I would imagine.

We were both off today which is a rare thing, so we decided to take a little road trip to one of Louisiana’s oldest cities.
I will share more of about that later this week.

Ok, maybe just a hint!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

In Memory

In Memory of All Who Served,
Especially Those Who Gave Their All
For Freedom.....

Thank You

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Unexpected Surprise

Wildflower:  a flower that grows without deliberate
care or cultivation.


I have shared several times about the wonderful place I have to walk close to my home. It is a well maintained walking path,
a half mile long and well used.
There is a pasture next to the path that has these beautiful wild blackeyed Susans blooming now. 


On this particular day, I noticed a small path through the trees farther along and caught a glimpse of bright orange!

Of course, that was as good as a Red flag to me so
 I grabbed my camera on the next lap and struck out on
 this little path to get a closer look.

I found this little patch of Butterfly weed (also known as chigger weed!) blooming in a small field that I think is a cut through for the  power lines.  I am still practicing with my camera and the color is a little saturated, but the blooms were so bright and pretty.


Not only did I find Butterfly weed, but several varieties of Coneflower and Rudbeckia along with the sweetest little pink flowers and some purple as well.


 Aren’t these the happiest colors? I felt like I had found a
 “secret wildflower garden”.



As I wandered around, enjoying the beauty of God’s planting, I couldn’t help wonder if I were picking up any of those “chiggers” or "redbugs" as they are called in Louisiana. 
 Thankfully, I didn’t bring any home with me!


Hopefully, no chemicals will ever be used to control
the grass in this little wildflower garden and we can continue to enjoy this secret place.

Just don’t tell anyone it is there, ok?


I came across this poem and thought it reflected my feelings as well.

God, make my life a little flower,
That giveth joy to all;
Content to bloom in native bower,
Although it's place be small.
                                  Matilda B. Edward

Hopefully, I can give a little joy to someone this week in return for the joy I received from discovering this "wildflower garden".

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Cool Summer Supper

The weather has been beautiful this past week, cool at night, 70’s during the day, the humidity low…….we knew that wouldn’t last. Today the humidity returned and my walk left me hot and sticky.

 I decided to have a salad for supper. We had grilled chicken strips with mixed greens and added some fresh strawberries and mandarin oranges with just a bit of red onion and a few pecans.
 Good ole' iced tea to go with. 
 Just the thing for a cool supper on a warm evening.


I found a wonderful surprise today on my walk.
I will share that with you next time!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Des Jardins II


As promised, a few more pictures from the garden tour last weekend. In addition to the flowers, I took quite a few pictures of “garden art” or accessories that I thought were used well.
 I loved the shape of this hummingbird feeder as well as the color hung in front of the window.


There were lovely fountains in several of the gardens and this one was particularly inviting. All the cool greenery around made you want to stop and sit a spell.


Candles on a low wall would be so pretty lit in the evening time.


Here is what resembles a sugar kettle or something similar that has been turned into a fountain in a entryway courtyard.


And just for my mother and sister, beautiful hydrangeas. Isn’t this the most beautiful shade of pink?
These pictures are mostly straight from the camera and these colors were awesome.


Another lighter shade of pink in the same hydrangea bed.


Had enough pink?  Well, how about blue?


These French Blue hydrangeas take me back once again to my childhood, to my Aunt Willie Mae’s house with these big
blue-balled hydrangeas all along the side of her house.
Blue is my favorite color and this shade just  makes me happy.


How about this shade of blue with just a hint of yellow center?


And then, there is somewhere in between blue and pink.


Oh, I just can’t choose! I love them all.


The sunlight dappled on the blooms and leaves was so pretty.
 I wish I could go back and take my time in photographing these beautiful gardens.  


As we were admiring one of the borders in a garden, we saw this woodpecker in the neighbor’s compost bin having lunch. He was so fun to watch, diving in for a tasty bug or worm. I couldn’t get close enough to reach across the fence, so pretend the wire isn’t there.
  Birds and Blooms….my two favorite things!


As I said earlier, I always learn something new on these tours.
 Here, in the corner of a porch, this nest caught my eye.
Before you get squeamish, the snake is not real. I am pretty sure he was placed there to discourage the building of a birds nest….
as you can see, and as was evidenced by a bird flying back and forth to the nest, it didn’t work!
 Sounds like a good plan to me, but evidently the bird wasn’t fooled.


Pretty blue glass bowl could be used as a feeder or small bird bath. This bed was mostly green and this cool blue added just the
 right  amount of color.

I hope you enjoyed, once again, my meanderings through these wonderful gardens.  Did you get any good ideas? I hope so.

 I can certainly understand why God decided to create man in a garden. There is no more beautiful place on earth. 


Till next time…….Carolyn

I created this post a couple of days ago and due to Blogger problems, I am just now posting.

  My prayers are with the folks living near the Mississippi River in Louisiana and Mississippi. My heart goes out to them. 

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Le Tour Des Jardins


Each spring, the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners sponsors a tour of some of the loveliest gardens in the area. They are located at various homes in the area and  are always creative and beautiful. I thought I would share some of the pictures I took yesterday as I enjoyed the beauty and talent of these gardeners.


The first garden I visited is out in the country and included a beautiful vegetable garden. There are espaliered apple trees, blackberry and muscadine vines along with lots of raised beds of veggies. There were several acres of flowers, trees and vegetables. This is one of my favorites of the day.


In the background of the picture above is a small, one room house that is used as a "canning" kitchen. It is immaculate with counter space, an old rectangle cast iron sink and a modern gas range along with a refrigerator.  It also has a seating area for relaxing after work is done. I think this is a wonderful idea, keeping the mess and heat from the main house.


The next garden was a more formal affair with this wonderful wrought iron piece on the garage.
Isn't it funny how our eye is always drawn to the center opening?


Beautiful sculptures and fountains graced this space.



I thought the colors in this planter were so striking together.
 The lime green of the creeping jenny contrasting with the reds of the impatiens and the cool blue-gray of the flagstone.


The next garden had this wonderful antique gaslight
that I just fell in love with!
What a treasure to have beside your patio.


This beautiful Clematis climbing up a tree was not actually
on the tour. It was in the yard across the street, and so
beautiful I couldn’t resist taking its picture.
 Another clever idea in displaying a blooming vine.


This pretty house also caught my eye on the same street. It has a “For Sale” sign in front and the black and white awnings and curtains are very striking with the grey paint and black shutters.


Lush foliage gave the gardens a cool, inviting feel in addition to the color of the flowers. I like to use different shades of green and different textures and shapes in my yard as well. How about you?


One of the gardens had an outdoor fireplace and I thought this vignette on the mantle just so sweet and fitting.


I will leave you with this sweet Clematis today. I have more, including my favorite, hydrangeas, to share in my next post.  The tour always inspires me to come  home and try something  new or different in my own yard and I usually find a new plant to try.

I know I have been absent  for a couple of weeks,
taking a break from the blogging world.
My life has been unusually hectic and the
creativity just hasn’t been there.
 Hopefully, I will regroup and my trusty Canon and I will find new and interesting things to share on a more regular basis.

Thank you for visiting today.