Attracted

~

Distracted, or focused? A short walk outside, into the garden, is all it takes.

Whatever my purpose, I’m soon distracted by the life of the garden around me.  A bird zooms from shrub to limb.  A butterfly hovers, a rabbit skitters off for cover.  My eyes search out new growth and newly blooming flowers.  I check the progress of the season.

~

~

If momentarily distracted from the business of the day, my attention is re-focused on the beauties unfolding around me.

I make a quick observation of what needs to be done:  deadheading, staking, weeding, harvesting….

I can get lost in timeless loops of doing; of nurturing the many different growing things and buzzing things and skittering things and gliding things who animate this magical world outside our doors.

~

~

Each time I step outside the light has shifted, the players changed:  goldfinches, skinks, turtles, hawks, cardinals, swallowtails, caterpillars, dragonflies and toads.

Each passing day brings flowers budding or fading; new leaves unfurling; new stems materializing overnight.

~

~

The earth is wet, the earth is dry, the earth has covered itself with green or turned stubbornly hard and barren.

The unfolding drama of each day captures my attention entirely.

~

~

The phone may ring, and I may fish it out of my pocket with a muddy hand; and distractedly connect the call.  Or perhaps I’ll silence it and send the message to voicemail while I frame another shot.

Such concentration it takes, to capture it all as the light shifts and the wind blows and the butterflies float away a nanosecond before my shutter clicks.

~

~

I am hopelessly attracted by the wonder of it all.  I will wander the paths of our garden in sun or rain, dusk or broiling mid-day sun; the air so thick with summer that it is nearly liquid and dense with life.  The scent of ginger lilies permeates the evening breeze.

I hear the furtive rustling of a lizard behind a pot, or on the backside of a trunk; the call and response of crows; the sunset clicking of cardinals settling into their shelter as darkness falls; and bats re-claim the evening sky.

~

~

Photos By Woodland Gnome 2017
For the Daily Post’s
Weekly Photo Challenge:  Ooh, Shiny!

~

~
“We are here to love.
Everything else is distraction.”
.
Scott Stabile

 

Fabulous Friday: The Napping Bee

~

I was trecking through the garden a bit earlier than usual this morning.  Thank the doe I spotted strolling in the lower garden, for that.  The cat and I were enjoying the best of early morning on our dew dampened deck when she strolled into view, gazing up at us way too innocently.

Not yet dressed for the garden, at least I had on some old jeans and a pair of deck shoes.  I took off for the back door, grabbed the long baton we keep there for such activities, and headed out to inspire her swift departure.  Since my camera was right there on the kitchen counter, I grabbed it too, and headed down the hill in pursuit.

~

~

Mrs. Doe knows us well.  And she soon realized that since it was just me, she could lead me on a merry chase.

Across the bottom, back up hill, through the perennials in front; she thought she had found refuge by lying down under our stand of Mountain Laurel.  But I still saw her, still as she was in the shadows, and let her know it was time to go.

~

~

Once she had leapt the fence back to the neighbor’s yard next door, I hung out for a while, taking photos and listening for her to try to sneak back in.

And that is when I spotted the napping bee.  These bumblies don’t have hives, like honeybees.  And it isn’t unusual to find them, sleeping still, in the cool of early morning, clinging to the same flowers they visited last evening.

~

Breakfast at the Agastache…

~

A few of its mates were lazily slurping their breakfasts nearby.  Perhaps their night time perch had already been warmed by the sun.

~

Allium, Verbena bonariensis and Coreopsis all delight hungry pollinators.

~

Our sunny perennial beds are planted to attract as many pollinators as we can. The Agastache, in its third year, has grown into a gigantic mass of nectar rich flowers.  It will bloom steadily now until frost.

~

Agastache with white mealy cup sage, white Echinacea, purple basil, thyme, dusty miller and a calla lily offer plenty of choices for our pollinators.

~

Looking around, the feast is definitely laid for the wild creatures who frequent our garden.  There are ripening berries and abundant insects for our several families of birds.  There are plenty of flowers beckoning bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.

~

~

And, there are plenty of ants marching along in formation to feed the skinks who sun themselves on our porches.   A huge rabbit, maybe even bigger than our cat, was munching grass on the front lawn at dusk last night.  And we’ve found several box turtles, who eat most anything, sheltering among the perennials.

And how could the deer not look in through the fences, and use every brain cell they’ve got to find a way into the garden?  Sadly, unlike our other garden visitors, their munching harms the plants and destroys the beauty of the place.

~

Oakleaf Hydrangea, although native in our region, is still loved by hungry deer. This is our first year to enjoy more than a single bloom or two. I keep it sprayed with Repels-All.

~

The doe who called me outside this morning was the third deer in two days, and she returned with a friend just an hour or so later, while I was brewing coffee.  By partner and I teamed up to help them both find their way back out.  That was a respectable work-out for both of us!

~

The summer blooming Crinum lily is poisonous. This is one of the few lilies we dare grow, as it isn’t grazed and the bulbs won’t be disturbed by rodents. Hardy in Zone 7, this lily is long lived and the clump expands each year.

~

When I went back outside, a bit later, to begin my day’s tasks in the garden; my partner took off to Lowe’s for a fresh bag of Milorganite.   Inches of rain, earlier this week, must have washed away what was left.

The Milorganite really does work.… until it doesn’t.  It’s not hard to tell when it’s time for a fresh application.  It might last as long as a couple of months, unless we have a heavy rain.

~

~

I ended my morning’s gardening by spreading the entire bag of Milorganite, making sure to also cover that sweet spot under the Mountain Laurel where the doe believed she could hide.

By then, the sun was fully warming the front garden.  Our napping bee had awakened, and gotten on with the serious business of sipping nectar and collecting pollen.

~

~

When I was young, I collected bumblies just like her in a glass jar with holes poked in the lid, just to observe the bees up close.  The delight in watching these creatures go about their work has never faded.

Now, it is fabulous to watch our June garden host so many wild and beautiful visitors.

~

“The keeping of bees
is like the direction of sunbeams.”
.
Henry David Thoreau
~

~

Woodland Gnome 2017
~

Fabulous Friday: 

Happiness is contagious!  Let’s infect one another!

Wildlife Wednesday

July 13, 2016 garden close ups 032

~

“Mindfulness is not the path of chasing.

It is the path of beautification.

When flowers blossom, the fragrance spreads,

and the bees come.”

.

Amit Ray

~

July 13, 2016 garden close ups 030

~

“We need to return to harmony with Nature

and with each other,

to become what humans were destined to be,

builders of gardens and Shires,

hobbits (if you will),

not Masters over creatures great and small.”

.

Steve Bivans

~

July 13, 2016 garden close ups 024

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2016

~

July 13, 2016 garden close ups 027

~

“Gardens are not made by singing ‘Oh, how beautiful!’

and sitting in the shade.”

.

Rudyard Kipling

~

July 13, 2016 garden close ups 004

~

 

“It is not reasonable that art should win

the place of honor over our great and powerful

mother Nature. We have so overloaded

the beauty and richness of her works

by our inventions that we have quite smothered her.”

.

Michel de Montaigne

~

July 13, 2016 garden close ups 002

Wordless Wednesday

June 26, 2016 deadhead 044
~
“You are the ocean, let the rivers come to you.
You are the flower, let the bees come to you.”
.
Amit Ray
~
June 23, 2016 dusk 019~
Photos by Woodland Gnome 2016

 

En Masse…..

June 24, 2016 flowers 030
 ~
We love flowers which bloom en masse….
 ~
June 23, 2016 dusk 012 ~
Clusters of tiny, nectar rich blossoms draw in our beautiful pollinators to enjoy the feast,
~
June 23, 2016 dusk 019 ~
and they also attract us with their beauty!
~
June 23, 2016 dusk 001
 ~
What intense, vibrant color summer flowers offer; especially when they open in giant, massed globes and spikes,
~
June 23, 2016 dusk 007
~
fluffy heads and intricate geometries!
~
June 24, 2016 flowers 010 ~
It’s the buffet, not the tapas; exuberant abundance over parsimonious rectitude.
~
June 23, 2016 dusk 016 ~
It is one of the absolute pleasures of high summer to find these floral follies opening daily,  filled with sweetness, scent, and the saturated color one dreams in February;
~
June 24, 2016 flowers 034 ~
en masse….
~
June 24, 2016 flowers 006
 ~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2016

~
June 24, 2016 flowers 021
 ~
“That’s what I consider true generosity:
You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing.”
.
Simone de Beauvoir
~

June 24, 2016 flowers 019

 

Wednesday Vignette: Defiant Compassion

College Creek

College Creek

~

“Your Garden is Defiant Compassion

Your garden is a protest. It is a place of defiant compassion.

That space is one to help sustain wildlife and ecosystem function while providing an aesthetic response that moves you.

For you, beauty isn’t petal deep, but goes down into the soil, further down into the aquifer, and back up into the air and for miles around on the backs and legs of insects.

You don’t have to see soil microbes in action, birds eating seeds, butterflies laying eggs, ants farming aphids –

– just knowing it’s possible in your garden thrills you,

it’s like faith, and it frees you to live life more authentically.

Your garden is a protest

for all the ways in which we deny our life

by denying other lives.

Go plant some natives. Be defiantly compassionate.    “

 

Benjamin Vogt:    The Deep Middle

~

The cardinals feast on Wax Myrtle berries in our 'biohedge' all winter long.

The cardinals feast on Wax Myrtle berries in our ‘biohedge’ all winter long.

~

Benjamin Vogt visited Forest Garden this morning, and left a link to his “Defiant Compassion” post in a comment on my review of Ken Druse’s The Natural Habitat Garden.  Benjamin writes, speaks, designs native plant gardens, and maintains his own 2000 square foot prairie style garden in Nebraska.  I’m honored that he visited Forest Garden and left a comment and link to share his site.

His words move me, as I hope they move you.  He has cut through all of the chatter and spoken truth:

“- just knowing it’s possible in your garden thrills you,

it’s like faith, and it frees you to live life more authentically.”

Just knowing that it is possible to help sustain the food chain, the ecosystem, and the planet through our own small efforts on our own bit of land speaks to a powerful realization.  Each of us, through our own consistent choices and efforts may contribute to the great work.  We don’t need 100 acres and conservancy status to make a difference.  We can make a difference even in our small suburban yards.

And even better, when we can enlist the participation of a friend or two, together we have a far greater impact.  This awareness spreads from person to person, heart to heart, and garden to garden.

~

February 16,2016 sunset 022

~

This morning, I finally made the time to visit the National Wildlife Foundation’s website to register our garden as a Certified Wildlife Habitat.  This is something I’ve intended to do for months now.  I don’t know why I thought it would be a time consuming project.  It was really very simple, and took less than 10 minutes to complete.

To certify, you need to provide sources of food and water for wildlife, cover, safe areas to raise their young, and a healthy environment.  The website asks specific questions in all of these areas.  When you can certify that your garden provides the resources wildlife need to live, you qualify as an official habitat.

A minimal donation of $20.00  also brings membership in the National Wildlife Federation, its newsletters and magazines.

It is a symbolic step, you realize, but we are very happy to have become a part of this growing movement to support habitat and wildlife.

I intend to encourage my gardening friends, and maybe you, too, to certify your own garden as a Wildlife Habitat with the National Wildlife Federation.

It shows our commitment.  But it also shows our intent to work together with others to preserve native plants, native habitat, and the myriad creatures who share our gardens with us.  It is too great a task for any  of us to accomplish alone.  But in fellowship with others of like mind, we can make a significant impact.

~ September 4, 2015 garden 018

~

When I finished registering, the National Wildlife Federation kindly sent me a press release which we could forward on to our local newspaper.  Here is part of what it says:

“We are so excited to have another passionate wildlife gardener join us and create a Certified Wildlife Habitat. Over the last 40 years, nearly 200,000 wildlife gardeners have joined NWF’s Garden for Wildlife movement and helped restore wildlife habitat right in their own yards and neighborhoods,” said David Mizejewski, naturalist with the National Wildlife Federation. “Whether you garden in a suburban yard, an apartment balcony or a 10-acre farm, a schoolyard or a business park, or anything in between, everyone can create a home for local wildlife.  Turning your space into a Certified Wildlife Habitat is fun, easy and makes a big difference for neighborhood wildlife,” he added.

NWF’s Garden for Wildlife program encourages responsible gardening that helps pollinators and other wildlife thrive. It encourages planting with native species like milkweed and discouraging chemical pesticide use. With nearly 200,000 locations and growing, NWF’s Certified Wildlife Habitats and Community Wildlife Habitats recognize individuals, schools, groups and whole communities committed to providing habitat for wildlife, including pollinators.

Each of the nearly 200,000 certified locations provides food, water, cover and places to raise young. This makes yards, schools, businesses, places of worship, campuses, parks, farms and other community-based landscapes into wildlife sanctuaries. For more information on gardening for wildlife and details on how an entire community can become certified, visit www.nwf.org/habitat or call 1-800-822-9919.  For more National Wildlife Federation news, visit: www.nwf.org/news.

~

September 30, 2015 Parkway 016

~

Don’t you want to be a part of this, too?  Please leave a comment if you already have a certified Wildlife Habitat.  And please also leave a comment if you decide to certify your yard as a habitat.  The process is structured to be feasible for gardeners in all sorts of living situations.  The Federation’s website offers many helpful resources to get started.

~

July 20, 2015 garden 005

~

Here are some resources from Forest Garden which might prove helpful, too:

Bringing Birds to the Garden

Butterfly and Hummingbird Gardens

Native Plants

~

August 29, 2015 turtle 004

~

“Wildness is the preservation of the World.”

.

Henry David Thoreau

~

July 1, 2015

~

“The Holy Land is everywhere”

.

Black Elk

 

~

 

February 16,2016 sunset 055~

Woodland Gnome 2016

 

Outrageous Color

Beautyberry

Beautyberry

~

Fall never fails to fascinate with its outrageous color.

~

 Camellia

Camellia

~

Suddenly, the tired, dry world of late summer in reinvigorated by cooler nights, shorter days, and a bit of rain.  And the world transforms itself yet again.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 009

~

Each day just grows better as the colors concentrate into the brightest possible hues.  A cerulean sky floats above gold and bronze, scarlet and orange leaves of all shapes and descriptions.

~

November 3, 2015 autumn 001

~

When the wind whispers even slightly, a shower of falling leaves gently let loose and dance their way to the ground.  And there they lay in moist and colorful splendor, against an emerald green mix of grass and herbs, until they fade.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 006

~

We, too, float in that magical space of Indian Summer, here in Williamsburg this year.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 018

~

After morning rain, we enjoyed warm sunshine this afternoon.  The golden late afternoon sun animated every petal and leaf in the garden.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 026

~

We had the slider to the deck open to enjoy the balmy, rain rinsed air.   The cat and I enjoyed this chance to hear the birds just outside in the trees and smell the sweetness of autumn.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 003

~

New flowers are opening daily on the Camellias.  Even our perennials still bravely pump out buds, hoping this warmth will last.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 016

Echinacea

~

The hungry bees lap of each day’s nectar like the precious gift that it is.  And we feast on the colors of autumn, changing daily, packing in every bit of beauty to our minds’ eyes, while they last.

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 023

~

Woodland Gnome 2015

NaBloPoMo_1115_298x255_badges

~

November 5, 2015 autumn flowers 011

~

“Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not,

but reckon up the chief of the blessings you do possess,

and then thankfully remember

how you would crave for them if they were not yours.”

.

Marcus Aurelius

~

Winter's buds have appeared on our Edgeworthia.

Winter’s buds have appeared on our Edgeworthia.

Just Hanging On

August 5, 2015 butterflies 034~

The lower garden buzzed with activity this morning as I stood there, camera in hand, taking photos as quickly as the camera would record and refocus.  There were butterflies behind me, all manner of strange looking pollinators moving methodically from flower to flower in front of me, and bees buzzing all around.  I could feel the wind off the wings of a large bumble bee who flew up and around my shoulders inspecting the camera, and me, probably.

Totally aware, the pollinators watch me watch them.  How often has one flown away in the split second between focus and photo?  They can sense when I’m ready to snap the picture.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 040~

Some mind, others don’t mind at all.  Hummingbird moths prove especially patient with my photo shoot, keeping on about their hungry business of visiting each flower.

~

August 2, 2015 garden 077~

In the sun’s mid-day glare it is often impossible to tell where the focus falls, and I snap by instinct.  Only later, working at the computer can I mine the riches and discard the misses!

~

August 2, 2015 garden 086~

But the bees were especially comical today.  They’ve grown fat and heavy by this point in the summer’s feasting; and as they landed on tall, narrow stalks of sage the whole stalk would fall over, with the bee still holding on madly, to sip its fill.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 033~

I’ve never seen anything quite like it.  Many of the photos I snapped had a blur where the bee should be.  Happily, a few are clear enough to share.

I sometimes feel like the bees on these hot, muggy mornings of early August.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 050

~

We are just hanging on, waiting now for the cooler wave of autumn weather  to find us.  We are hanging on through the numbing heat, sustained by the sweet nectar of fresh peaches, ripe melons, fat blueberries and crisp cucumbers.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 052

~

We are hanging on to the long summer evenings where daylight doesn’t quite fade away until nearly nine, and creatures chirp and sing until past midnight.  We are hanging on to the pleasure of flowers blooming, and the fun of baby lizards flashing their blue tails across the deck in the afternoons.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 006

~

We know to hold on tightly to suck every last drop of pleasure from these last few weeks of summer.

The shelves at Walmart brim with packs of pencils and stacks of clean notebooks.  Back to school supplies now fill the shelves where picnic ware and sunscreen sat just a few weeks ago.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 020

~

Change is in the air; but only the first hints of it.  For today, there is still time to stand still in the midst of the butterfly gardens admiring the fine growth of Salvias and mints, Basil and Rudbeckia and all the activity they attract.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 036

~

We’re  just hanging on to the pleasure of watching butterflies cruise around from shrub to shrub as a hummingbird dives down into the midst of the bees, hovering just above them for a while and planning his attack.  My partner watched with me this morning, resting in the shade between bouts with the lawnmower.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 026

~

He pointed out the hummingbird, and dispatched me after the butterflies he sighted.  The photos then are teamwork today.

They allow us to hang on to the magic of summer mornings in the garden, keeping company with one another, and with the magical and wise creatures who join us there.

~

August 5, 2015 butterflies 053

~

Woodland Gnome 2015

 

August 5, 2015 butterflies 022

Foliage Everywhere

July 20, 2015 garden 035

~

Garden Blogger’s Foliage Day technically falls on the 22nd of each month, and it is only the 21st.

Yet foliage is the hot topic of conversation among my gardening friends this week as we look around in dismay at our overgrown gardens.  That may not be the sort of foliage this meme is intended to highlight, of course; but the unplanted abundance of grasses and other ‘volunteers’ has gotten ahead of many of us in this heat and humidity.

~

July 20, 2015 garden 004

~

My timing has not been praiseworthy this past month on very much, and certainly not on keeping up with the round of blogging memes.

~

Hardy Begonia grows in this mixed pot with Oxalis and creeping Jenny.

Hardy Begonia grows in this mixed pot with Oxalis and creeping Jenny.  Autumn ferns grow nearby on a shady slope in the back garden.

~

How long since I’ve actually filled a Vase on Monday or observed a proper Wordless Wednesday?  As you might guess, my time and energy are re-focused at the moment on a very non-garden related cause.  So I will grab onto this opportunity to craft a preemptive foliage post, and beg your understanding that it comes a day early.

~

Coleus with Colocasia

Coleus with Colocasia

~

The garden is currently on ‘auto-pilot’ and I feel grateful to make a morning or evening walk-about to water a bit and take photos.  Any serious work out of doors is on hold until the weather pattern shifts.

~

Pineapple mint

Pineapple mint

~

The lovely lush grass will just have to keep growing for a few more days/weeks/months into and around my once carefully planted beds.  C’est la vie…

~

The path behind the 'butterfly garden' is a bit overgrown at the moment...

The path behind the ‘butterfly garden’ is a bit overgrown at the moment…

~

I’m just grateful to live in an air-conditioned home in this age of unprecedented heat.  Between the unusually high humidity, frequent showers, and oppressive heat; it is hard to spend long out of doors.  Many of the plants love it, but the humans find themselves drenched in perspiration just walking out to the air conditioned car!

~

This has been a good year to begin a 'bog garden.'

This has been a good year to begin a ‘bog garden.’

~

There is a reason our garden looks tropical this summer!

~

A native pitcher plant digests whatever creatures explore these unusual leaves.

A native pitcher plant digests whatever creatures explore these unusual leaves.

~

But there is balance in all things.  As I study the progress and prodigious growth of grasses around the ornamentals, I remember that they are trapping carbon from the air with every passing moment of growth.  It doesn’t really matter whether the growing foliage is something we planted or not; every growing leaf and twig filters the air and gives us fresh oxygen to breathe.

A lovely thought, though it likely won’t make a dent in the planetary forces driving these odd weather patterns.

~

Begonia 'Gryphon' grows lush this July.

Begonia ‘Gryphon’ grows lushly this July despite competition from grape vines and other Begonias.  Yucca leaves grow behind its pot.

~

At least the weeds also protect the soil during torrential rains.  Or so my partner reminds me on the rare occasions he sees me pulling them out by their roots.

There is a certain logic there, and I acquiesce to his greater wisdom these days.   Watching video of flooding elsewhere makes us grateful for our blessings and a lot less obsessive about our landscape.

~

Wild Tradescantia  crops up among the grasses in some of the garden beds.  This more cultivated variety is one I planted this spring.  Here, it grows uphill, reaching for the light.

Wild Tradescantia crops up among the grasses in some of the garden beds. This more cultivated variety is one I planted this spring. Here, it grows uphill, reaching for the light.

~

Yet tropical growth also harbors tropical style infestations of certain insects.  The fly swatter came out of storage as my partner bravely battles with those tiny black mosquitoes which steal into the house these days!  We grow mindful of them whenever we open a door.

They like him far better than they like me; or maybe its just that they find less exposed skin to attack on me!

~

Coleus with a sweet potato vine

Coleus with a sweet potato vine

~

No matter, my latest infestation of chigger bites are still healing, thus the protective clothing.  Disgusting, but I’m even wearing socks while these things heal.

~

July 20, 2015 garden 028

~

And the Cannas, Hibiscus and roses have fared no better against the hungry Japanese beetles who have settled in for the foreseeable future.  Their foliage is more riddled with holes than our skin with bites.

~

July 13, 2015 flowers 017

~

Trying to practice what I preach, so far I’ve relied on the hungry birds to hunt them.

Twice I’ve pruned the roses with bucket in hand, drowning a few in Borax laced soapy water.   July offers a powerful challenge to the most sincere sentiments of Ahimsa, or harmlessness and universal love.

How much love can I muster for those shiny green beetles munching our roses?  Is it a loving act to release them from their chitin clad bodies back to the universe?

~

July 20, 2015 garden 031

~

But looking past the beetles are the bees; squadrons of them!  We are happy to see them methodically moving from flower to flower, gathering what they may.

~

July 20, 2015 garden 027

~

There is no shortage of bumble bees here, although spotting a honey bee is a much rarer event.  Bumblebees, wasps of every description, dragon and damselflies entertain us with their swooping flights around the garden.  The occasional butterfly flutters past, a reminder to persevere against all odds.

~

Joe Pye Weed, a popular stopping place for all pollinators.

Joe Pye Weed, a popular stopping place for all pollinators.

~

One can’t live this long without learning a thing or two about stubbornness and patience; and flexibility.  As I heard so often growing up, “This too, shall pass.”  Someone in the house had read Ecclesiastes a time or three….

~

Coleus with Oxalis

Coleus with Oxalis

~

And perhaps we can read this lesson in our gardens, as well; watching the magical processes of growth and passing away.

For the moment, I am happy that the garden continues to grow in beauty and abundance.  I know what is happening out there, even though much of my foliage gazing these days happens through the windows…

~

Hazelnuts are ripening on the trees.

Hazelnuts are ripening on the trees.

~

I appreciate Christina, who gardens in the Hesperides,  for hosting this Garden Blogger’s Foliage Day meme on the 22nd of each month. She challenges us to focus on the foliage in our gardens; not just the flowers.  I feel certain she will understand this early entry, and hope July finds her garden growing as abundantly as ours.

~

Begonia

Begonia

~

Woodland Gnome 2015

~

July 20, 2015 garden 033

~

“Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better,

than that a man should rejoice in his own works;

for that is his portion:

for who shall bring him to see what shall be after him?”

Ecclesiastes 3:22

 

 

Bee-Friendly

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 087

~

“Once again…welcome to my house.

Come freely. Go safely;

and leave something of the happiness you bring.”

.

Bram Stoker

~

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 081

~

“There is no hospitality like understanding.”

.

Vanna Bonta

~

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 084

~

“Create inclusion – with simple mindfulness

that others might have a different reality from your own.”

.

Patti Digh

~

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 085

~

“It only takes one cat – or person –

to make another feel welcome and special.”

.

  Laura C. Monteiro

~

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 082

~

“But still – that is our vocation:

to convert the hostis into a hospes,

the enemy into a guest

and to create the free and fearless space

where brotherhood and sisterhood

can be formed and fully experienced.”

.

  Henri J.M. Nouwen

~

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 080~

We are all strangers in this strange land; all but the natives who greeted us in 1607 and their children’s children who live among us now.

The genius, the energy, and the stubborness of “Americans” comes from our identity as immigrants, as newcomers.  Every new wave of immigrants brings some special something with them, which woven into the fabric of our culture keeps us ever new and relevant.

America remains in a constant state of rebellion against what is outdated and stale.  We welcome the fresh breezes from the sea to clear away the smog and offer us a view of the infinite blue sky.

~

Jamestown Island, July 4, 2015

Jamestown Island, July 4, 2015

~

Happy Independence Day! 

May our Nation be always blessed by love.

~

Jamestown Island still bears sweet fruits for those who stop to gather them.

Jamestown Island still bears sweet fruits for those who stop to gather them.

~

Woodland Gnome 2015

~

July 4, 2015 Jamestown 043

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