Monday, May 17, 2021
Sunday, May 16, 2021
Saturday, May 15, 2021
Friday, May 14, 2021
Thursday, May 13, 2021
Oh dear! Am I becoming a shopaholic? I came home from yet another visit to the grocery store, feeling giddy and bubbling over with stories to share! Is this the new highlight of my life? A COVID side-effect? Collateral damage from quarantining?
Hannaford has been refurbishing the interior look of their stores over the past year, and changing things around (making it very confusing). The bakery section looks quite welcoming - this is the Standish store, where I used a $10 off coupon I got in the mail, to encourage people to come in and see the new layout and décor. It worked!
I felt so relaxed and confident about buying and handling groceries, that I EVEN brought my own shopping bags that I allowed other people to touch! It felt so good to get back into the swing of what had been my normal, and to go back to using net and string bags instead of plastic for my produce.
The flower display was quite lovely:
I was impressed to see an employee going back and forth through each aisle with sanitizer and cloth, systematically wiping down any handles and surfaces that customers would handle or touch. The elderly gentleman whose sole task it was to keep the store sanitized, made the best of his time in each aisle by having playful interactions with each and every customer. He was friendly and delightfully cheerful each time I encountered him in a different aisle.
And then when I got home, there was no sanitizing procedure to be done either. That's behind me now, thank goodness.
Wednesday, May 12, 2021
What an exquisite leaf arrangement and coloration! It doesn't get more gorgeous than this - Swida alternifolia, the pagoda dogwood (or more boringly, the alternate-leaved dogwood), another native I discovered as an understory shrub in my woods some time ago. The green color is stunning, the reddish-brown contrast superb, the form beautiful and the leaf tiers elegant. And this is even without the flowers!
Tuesday, May 11, 2021
Monday, May 10, 2021
Low to the ground and tiny, this little beauty can easily be passed over. But when it covers the forest floor in a mass of green and white fragility, it's eye-catching. I have some growing naturally on a bank beside my cove - they're wood anemones or also called windflowers. Their white blooms bob playfully in gentle breezes, making it seem as if the forest floor is moving. Quite amazing.
Sunday, May 9, 2021
The Saco Heath Preserve is one of my favorite spots to visit. It was closed during COVID-19 since there is no way to really step aside and keep 6 feet away from other people. If you step off the boardwalk, you're in the bog!
Saturday, May 8, 2021
Friday, May 7, 2021
Whilst enjoying the raindrops on my honeysuckle, I noticed these small, white flowers on a shrub near my elbow for the first time. Most of the time it just looks like a twiggy, nondescript and unidentifiable bush to me.
But when I saw these opened flowers, the name Amelanchier came to me. I looked it up in my 'go to' book of native northeastern shrubs, and yes, it appeared to be a serviceberry (also called shadbush), a good food source for wildlife.
Somehow, my brain had subconsciously absorbed the name and gist of this plant whilst paging through the volume. I had not identified it previously. The tools we have in our minds, and our capacity for learning new things, is amazing to me! And, I've just discovered, I'm still not too old to learn!
Thursday, May 6, 2021
Wednesday, May 5, 2021
Tuesday, May 4, 2021
The greening and unfurling of tall meadow rue (Thalictrum dasycarpum) is a spectacular sight. It starts like this ... part rose, part artichoke!
Monday, May 3, 2021
Sunday, May 2, 2021
I had the BEST shopping experience this week - at a grocery store! It was the most relaxed I've felt out in public in 413 days! Since I've completed my vaccination schedule, life has felt so much more comfortable, and other people are way less threatening, even nice to talk to!
I wore a mask the entire time, obviously, but I noticed how people took more time to dally and have 'conversations' with random strangers, such as checkout cashiers. In fact, I came home filled with anecdotes and interactions to share. It was so much fun! Who knew? Someone, get me to a doctor ...
Saturday, May 1, 2021
Friday, April 30, 2021
Invasive milfoil fragments have been washing up into our cove ever since the ice thawed, some with straggly roots that are viable starter plants! Eek! I've been busy scooping them out religiously, even though it's probably futile. My goal though, is simply to prevent it from invading and choking my personal cove, and that seems to be working, and is a manageable task.
We've had two fishing tournaments on our lake already this spring, so milfoil-chopping machinery has been super-active! My job of fishing them out is never-ending, but satisfying. I stopped to take a pic of a beautiful fragment floating by, and was taken in by the intricate beauty of the whorls and feathery leaflets of this intrepid and resilient invasive.
Thursday, April 29, 2021
Wednesday, April 28, 2021
Oh boy, spring is such an amazing time, but also a mixed bag of perks and forfeits: beautiful, crisp sunshine, unfurling blooms and glowing green moss.
Sparrows flip leaves noisily in bunches of five or more, and the white-throated sparrow repeats its signature call.
Northern flickers have been displaying and parading for each other on various branches, hoping to win the mate-jackpot.
Black flies have made their appearance, but not yet in swarming hordes.
The winds have been ferocious on some days - lovely for getting my laundry dry, provided I peg things down securely enough!
Tuesday, April 27, 2021
Monday, April 26, 2021
They are primitive, slow growing plants, taking about 20 years to mature and reproduce, so please don't harvest them for Christmas decorations.
Sunday, April 25, 2021
My haircap moss glowing boldly in the morning sun, as it sprawls over an old tree stump. They're like mini starbursts; showy for a moss, and beautiful in a rock or stump garden where soils are thin.