tree sex

Mar. 22nd, 2012 07:13 pm
sharon_dubois: (bloodroot)
I realize it is necessary but MUST they do it in public. I am very allergic to tree pollen so I hate spring. Except for the flowers. Except for the sunshine ... of never mind, let's say I am ambivalent about Spring. Another 80 degree day in a string of high 80 degree days and every flowering tree (the ones you plant for flowers) and all the other mostly leafy one are blooming. ALL AT THE SAME TIME!! I cannot stop sneezing, coughing, wanting to scratch my eyes out, you get the idea. I just hope the April weather fairies don't decide to have a laugh because it could be a disaster. As elsewhere there ain't going to be much/any maple syrup this year. Yes, webonauts, Michigan has a thriving syrup industry (or did).

It monsooned this afternoon and they the sun came out. So while driving to pick up my cat's insulin and to get Cami to the grocery store we dodged lakes, forded streams and searched for rainbows. None were found but we probably weren't looking in the right direction. At least the rain removed some of the maple flowers from the trees.

When I left this morning the mockingbirds were back on the front porch roof. When I got home cardinals were having a squabble in the front trees. Two males, one female and a screaming fit.
sharon_dubois: (adminONLY)
Another 80 degree day on tap. The heat has finally penetrated the basement where my office and classrooms are. Should be interesting this week being in a room with 20 server class heat makers and the heat on. The school doesn't turn AC on until May so we may have a long period of overheated rooms (at times they have been over 90 F). The only thing that gets you a fan is if you say the computers are suffering. No cries of students fainting from the heat matter.

And that note is a good segue into last night. The Board of Trustees meeting. Basically we were told that we are a bunch of money grubbing union thugs who are picking on a beautiful man, "best prez evah". That same prez now has armed guards as security on the entrance to the Admin building because, you know, roving faculty with rope, and knives, and guns and such. Given the current climate in Michigan I am not surprised. Sad but not surprised.

For Cami from last night's meeting:
zxzxz also told of visiting another college recently, and walking into the president's office and asking the secretary where the armed guards were. She was confused. He explained that WE have them for our president. She went and got their president to come and laugh and explain that he didn't need them.

the garden

May. 13th, 2011 06:14 pm
sharon_dubois: (Default)
Just got home from the program's open house for graduating students. They present their portfolios to (at least this semester) a crowd of people. Fun seemed to be had by all. I have turned in grades for two classes, two more to go!

Got home and felt the need to document the yard. It is HOT! outside today so somethings may go fast. It is currently 80 F?!? which is not uncommon for May but is for this very cold spring.

Fothergilla gardenii and friends.



Beautiful contrast twixt leaf and flower on a redleaf barberry --Berberis thunbergii var. atropurpurea.



Red bud. Cercis canadensis var. Forest Pansy



... and a Kwanzen Cherry Prunus serrulata ‘Kwanzan’ covered in flowers that look like little tutus. And lilac blooming from my compost mountain.

sharon_dubois: (Default)
... now that the sun has come out.

I've been looking at the news and twitter and got kind of depressed. Stupid political things continue in Michigan.

So I decided to tell a story of days gone by. Once upon a time a friend had a cat (mostly white calico) named Maggy Mayhem. One night we got the brilliant idea that we needed to have an easter cat coloring party. The focus was on the spring fixation on bunnies and eggs not easter per se. We had all grown up at a time when it was accepted practice for people to buy chicks and baby ducks all pink and lavender and blue and take them home for easter. (They stopped the practice but my dad always had a sign in his classroom the next week saying he would relocate said beasties to a nice home on a farm in Vermont.)

So we blew a lot of eggs, got egg decorating kits of every sort and got some food coloring so that we might be careful with Mayhem. After much egg decorating we used paint brushes and food coloring to paint a kitty. She didn't seem to mind and ended up with a couple of blue and green spots to go with her orange and black spots.

The house was situated such that the front window was right on the sidewalk and any number of people walked by, looked at the cat in the window, stopped and backed up. We removed most of the food coloring but she maintained traces of color for a few days. Blue/green is a very nice color for a cat.

I still have a jar full of some of the decorated eggs but they have faded substantially over the years. These are not great examples of the art but mine own.



As a side note: I am amazed at the products of the whole Eastern European egg tradition. I have tried doing them but have not the patience.
sharon_dubois: (Default)
It is currently 84 F outside, it was about 70 F yesterday. I figured that the daffs would be open after two days of heat. One will be open tomorrow as seen below.



I then looked around the yard to see what else I could find.

Crocii in the right of way.



An iris near the door.



And more hellebores in the back yard.



sharon_dubois: (Default)
I just got home and it is warm enough so that the flowers are all open. Mostly I can stand still enough to get a picture of the top of the tree. Some blur is my fault and some the wind. Mainly it is trying to stand with one crutch with the camera held as high as I can hold it ... well you get the picture.



I wanted the flowers to pop so here is one overexposed so that you can see all the little pink puffballs.

hellebores

Mar. 27th, 2010 05:11 pm
sharon_dubois: (romy)
Hellebores are an evergreen perennial. I like them because they bloom really early. I started out with a few plants and now have a variety from division and self seeding. I have mostly Helleborus orientalis hybrids with one Helleborus foetidus. The orientalis are what is in bloom at the moment.

They are all over the yard so just a few pictures of the ones it was easy to get to. A large clump of various shades outside my bedroom.



This one is self seeded and upward facing -- a bit of genetic diversity.



Others of a downward facing bloom type that make it a bit difficult for me to photograph so you can actually see the flower. Think me balanced on crutches, holding camera, trying to mentally convince the silly things to look at me, with wind.







Now back to grading midterms.

daffodils

Mar. 24th, 2010 07:18 pm
sharon_dubois: (totoroTree)
The dafs have finally started opening. HURRAH!!! See evidence...



... and the other new faces are iris reticulata.



New crocus open to add themselves to growing collection. Some in among the irises at the curb seem to persist even with neglect. I'm not sure what variety these are as a squirrel or other critter planted the first one.





On the school front more wrangling with the new scheduling software, it messed up our offerings again. How much did this system cost? I also tortured my 3D Animation students with a midterm.
sharon_dubois: (witchHazel)
Well it is 60 degrees F outside. I opened the garden window in the bedroom so Romy could bask in the sun with breezes blowing. Herself is happy. A couple of new openings as seen below plus with no snow I could actually document the backyard witch hazels. They have been open for a bit so not looking their very best but hey it is only they middle of March and I have numerous trees and shrubs blooming. No complaints from me.

The front door crocii... with bug.



Hellebores are in bloom all over the back yard. This clump was easiest to get to. The flowers open as soon as they come out of the ground and then their stalks get taller.



Chinese witch hazel -- opened February 1st.



Hamamelis x intermedia 'Jelena' -- opened about February 24th.



It is supposed to be sunny and 60F for the rest of the week so I may have daffodils by the weekend. Global warming anyone?
sharon_dubois: (Default)
The witch hazel out front (Hamamelis x intermedia 'Diane') has just opened and is much redder than it was in past years. I'll include the 'Jelena' in the backyard when the snow melts enough so I can get to it.




A few noses getting ready for a party.

Daffodils:



Crocus, Iris Reticulata and some awfully foolhardy day lilies:

sharon_dubois: (theMonster)

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