Wednesday, November 28, 2007


Two summers ago I had to do something drastic... I had to cut back my precious 20 year old croton. It had been given to me by a dear friend, now gone for many years. The croton was a reminder of her and the wonderful summers we spent in the Caribbean together, especially at Montserrat, now also partially gone, buried under tons and tons of volcanic ash. The croton was well over 8 feet tall and could not be brought back into the house - it just would not fit. I considered building another room on for it, but it would soon out grow that, so I took the cheaper route, I took a knife to it. I cut off the top 4 feet of the plant. Oh, I swear it hurt me as much or maybe more than the croton! I put the top in an orange juice bottle in water and watched as it dropped another leaf each week until there were only 3 leaves left. Then the miracle happened, the 3 remaining leaves stood back up and in a week there were roots and baby leaves coming from the dead looking old stem. Then, the other day, I noticed something strange on top of the new (and by now potted) plant. Since none of my friends have ever seen a croton bloom, I will take up a bit of cyberspace to show the flowers on the baby croton and the mama plant, now back up to 7 feet tall in less than 2 years.

Friday, November 23, 2007



Thanksgiving Day was an awesomely warm and beautiful day. In the morning, the leaves were at their peak. Everything seemed extra beautiful. I was so grateful to be able to see all that beauty, to see all the colors and to be able to walk out in the beauty and take pictures to share with you. Look at these camellias! Someone emailed me and asked me about the redbud leaves. They are about the same size as my hand.
I love finding the little surprises, Don't you? Like this touch of bright color in the middle of the jungle out back. Or the color combinations of the
Birch, spruce and Maple. All this gold is on the ground this morning. We had a bit of rain overnight and 40 mph winds.
I hope you had a beautiful day, too.

Thursday, November 15, 2007


Fall has finally arrived here on Possum Lane. For the last couple of days, the colors have been brilliant, or at least as brilliant as they get here. No, we never get the awesome reds of the maples up north and the bright yellows and oranges appear only sporadically here and there, but that makes them such a nice surprise when they do happen! A few trees lost their leaves a couple weeks ago so there are only a few leaves left on the biggest dogwood out back. This is from a week ago. The redbud is down to a few dozen big pale yellow-green hearts. The berries are “reddenin’ up for the winter.”
All the early fall camellias are in full bloom now, even Yule Tide has started to bloom though it seems a bit early. The frost got the coleus last week and the Strobilanthes next to St Francis has turned black. The Strobilanthes with the sweet potato leaves next to the carport (last post) is still beautiful, but who knows for how much longer.
It was in the mid 60s Thursday morning and calm. I went out to feed the cats wearing only a shirt (and jeans!) It was 65 and calm at 10 AM, but 52 at 10:30 with a good rain falling and winds between 20 and 30, gusts at 42 mph. Wow! By noon, the winds were clocked at over 60 mph at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and restrictions went up. As I was feeding Spook and Punkin, a big flock of Snows went over. If you watch carefully, you can learn the difference in Snow Geese and Canada Geese by looking at their formation when they fly. Then there are Brants – the sloppiest formation of all! If you get good at it, you can even learn which is which by the sound as they talk to each other as they fly along. Did you ever wonder what they are saying? Are they coaching the youngsters? Encouraging the old timers? Or are they pointing out the featherless bipeds on the ground and commenting on the plight of the earth-bound? Do they have someone who keeps track of the ponds and marshes along the way or which fields have corn that hasn’t been plowed under yet? Do they notice the tender wheat just coming up? Oh, that might be good for a snack!
As I looked up to see how many geese were flying over, I noticed the colors had changed drastically since yesterday. I grabbed my camera and walker and headed out to get a pic or two before the coming storm blew all the leaves off the trees. The brightest reds out there were poison ivy leaves going up a tree at the edge of the woods. I really did not have the energy to try to get out there, but it was a pretty red. I guess I will have to settle for this bush out front.
The Adirondack chairs are covered, the grill is in on the carport. I am starting to fill more birdfeeders each week as the winter crowd starts to settle in. the “butter butts” have moved on (Myrtle warblers,) and the winter robins have moved in.
Wednesday, as I sat on my walker in the sun enjoying the last of the 70 degree weather we will have for a while, one of my nuthatches sat in the bayberry bush and sang and sang. I was amazed at the range of songs that little fellow had. I had never paid much attention to their song before or I did not know who was doing all the singing.
The squirrels are planting pecans in my yard. My only pecan tree is just about 12 feet tall, much too small to produce any pecans, but I have pecans all over the place. Well, OK, so maybe I saw a dozen here and there, but still, that’s a lot for not having any pecan trees. I kept hearing a strange sound, one I was not sure about. It went on and on. I tried to move as quietly as I could to see who it was. The squirrel with a pecan in his mouth was probably saying some unkind things to Punkin who was on the ground ignoring him but watching the sparrows as they kicked up the leaves at the edge of the yard.
Ah, the sights and sounds of autumn. I think I enjoy it more than Springtime!

Monday, November 05, 2007


The past couple of weeks have been hectic, if you don’t mind an understatement. But then, compared to what some of the others around me have been going thru, I guess it hasn’t been bad, unless you are a cat or a flea. We put the cats in the kennel to be “defleaed,” took ourselves to Rehoboth to the outlets (LLBEAN!!! YEAH!!!!) having set off flea bombs in the house before we left. Having a cat with serious allergies, we then had to scrub and clean every surface he might step on when he came home. Spring house cleaning in the fall! They say the fleas have been so extraordinarily bad this year because of the drought and I believe that is so. We do seem to have flea problems during the dry years. So, having to do serious cleaning inside meant ignoring the outside chores, sigh. Soooo, the last few days have been spent trying to get many of the yard jobs done and finish getting all the house plants in as it has gotten down to the upper 30s. The croton and tropical plants have been in for a month or more as they can’t take temps below 50. Saturday I got the greenhouse cleaned out and finished putting in the geraniums, aloe and some cuttings. The greenhouse is tiny, so that means climbing on my hands and knees to reach the back of it, but it gives me flowers all winter when the weather does a number on the camellias or pansies outside.
This is Fino’s grave – World’s Best Cat – I had her for 21 years.
I keep pansies on her grave all the time. She is buried in the center of my Prayer Circle. The rocks around the grinding stone (for my ancestors) and shells are from friends who wanted to be remembered in the Prayer Circle. There are also some marbles in there, placed by some of my real young friends. Since stones are not naturally found here on the shore, some people bring shells.
Soon I will be doing my morning meditations in the house. Spook will have to do his all alone. The Buddhas have been enjoying the fall azaleas. I tried to take some pictures yesterday before we got any frost. Good thing I did as I can’t walk very well today. But, then, that will give me the time to sit here at the computer and finally get something on here, right?

Have you ever grown sweet potatoes as an ornamental plant, just for its beauty? A friend gave me this one in a pot of Persian Shield (Strobilanthes.) It has grown along the edge of the carport. I think it looks so cool.
The fall camellias are looking great. Some of the bushes are now over 10 feet tall. They look pretty good with the impatiens. I am so grateful for the beauty around me… I know I don’t have the mountains, hills, rivers and waterfalls down here, but I do have flowers that I could not have up there.

I do want to thank all of you who emailed me to see if I was all right. It is nice to be missed. I did try to keep up with many of your blogs, but half the time I could not get on to leave a comment, or someone was having a crisis and I had to go (see sentence 2.) It has been a hard couple of weeks physically and emotionally, but if we can’t be there for our friends in their times of need, who will be there for us? Enjoy the beauty of my flowers…