Friday, October 28, 2011

Mighty Oaks Begin Their Show Early Winter Paints the Landscape White!!

The Autumn landscape now wears russet and deep golden hues.

As strong tall Oaks free their true colors. 

This morning the landscape and gardens were tossed ahead a few months into winter temperatures and snow! 
Most unusual for this time of year.

This young buck forages through the wet snow. 
I love the way one of his budding antlers is directly poised 'side by side' with a plant stalk. 

By late morning the snow begins to melt and fall from the greatly relieved shrubs and trees. 
Like throwing off a heavy coat!

I am thankful to see green again along with the shades of Autumn. 
I found it quite astounding . . .  the difference in my mood . . . seeing the white melting away into the colorful palette again. 

High up in the naked Rock Maple a year round resident adult Red-shouldered Hawk fluffs up his feather coat. 
He gives me a glaring once-over, before placing his gaze upon the garden floor. 

His russet front mirrors the returning Autumn palette now mostly filling the landscape . . . 
 as it should be on an October morning.

Swooping down for some prey in the garden. Hopefully a rabbit or vole.

I could not see if he caught anything. 

Each day grows side by side another. Never knowing how one will compare from  the other.  I suppose it makes life more adventurous that way, though I would rather not have winter on what I expect to be an Autumn day. It is down right rude of winter. Tomorrow we are to be treated to another winter storm! 
I thought I saw some early winter snow in Sweden awhile back. Visit Katarina to see what might be 'sida vid sida' there. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Looking Back Wildly Native Highbush Blueberries Flowers to Fruit

Blueberry blooms in foreground. Lilac colors beyond.

Blueberries to the left . . . Snowy Crabapple on right.

The Blueberry field is down the hillside directly east of the old farmhouse retreat. 

Gray Birch growing around Blueberries

Magnolia blooms in the distance . . . Blueberries growing around Gray Birch.

Blueberry pendants

Yummy to pollinators.

Swelling fruit

Rose violet to blue purple.

Portrait within a drop of water upon a blueberry. 

Robin youngster eying berries and me

Scarlet Tanager 

A bounty of berries . . . enough for me and hundreds of birds.

Planting native blueberries creates delicious moments throughout the seasons in everyday life, for those that cultivate the soil and those wild creatures that delight in our 'gardening for wildlife' endeavors.
Wilflowers for Gail at Clay and Limestone

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Delicious Autumnal Palette In Varying Light

Days of the late summer and fall of 2011 will be recalled as perpetually wet and as if the whole of the landscape had been marinated in a slate gray soup. Drenched by Irene fed floods and months of moisture, the trees seem as unhappy about all the dampness as do the humans that live mostly within sheltered structures, where swollen doors refuse to completely close. 

Though in general the autumnal palette is of a duller value, there are a few trees . . . perhaps younger . . .  that boldly stand out in radiant reds. I have read that a fungus has taken hold of many Sugar Maples and I notice leaves of Paper Birches, Black Cherry and many other trees that too are mostly turning brown and dropping to the ground.

The bright oranges and reds that do shine through their complimentary green Oaks offer dabs of what we normally see spread in swaths of large striking brush strokes laid down thickly across Walnut and Carey hill. 

Luckily the rain did let up long enough to enjoy last weeks full moon. Everything seems off tilter . . . even the geese were flying in the wrong direction.

Sunset and moonrise light casts a particular veil across Carey Hill allowing an observer to see the true tree colors as brighter than earlier in dazzling sunlight. 

An ephemeral arch of refracting droplets between the soaking storms does create an equally ephemeral ebullient spirit. Rainbows demand quieted contemplation for their duration.

Once a rainbow fades . . . cracks within thick blue-gray washes of clouds create landscape light shows catching sparkling saturated hues. 

Masses of clouds hold magic too. 

Bluebird blue pops out before leafy green. 
I have had a few Bluebirds checking out the nest box below. They will share it this winter on the colder nights. I must be sure to get out and clean all the bird houses for they are safe sanctuary for our overwintering friends. One morning last winter I counted eight Bluebirds  . . .  one after another as they flew . . . flashes of cerulean and cobalt blue . . . out of the humble housing below. 

 Visual feasts such as these are fleeting and I savor the mouthwatering moments I look out on. While walking surrounded by a vivid landscape that soon enough will grow cold and much less colorful, I hold the images within like a fine wine or chocolate whose dreamy flavors I might swish around in my mouth before swallowing. 
I hear it has been very wet in Sweden too. Visit Katarina  for other mouth watery tales.
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