Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Nature notes and Green Thinker Award

Rambling Woods the host of Nature Notes and Signs of the Season, has kindly created a Green Thinker Award. I appreciated her mentioning my blog with others who visit Rambling Woods and who she's presenting this award to.


She asked that we post about how we try to take care of the planet by living green, when we accept the award. I have decided to combine that post with my nature notes post this week. I'm even earlier than usual with my nature notes because I wanted to go ahead and write the combo post.


To be honest, at this point in my life a lot of what I do in my own home suits my lack of energy as well as the environment. I've been an organic gardener for a long time, and still am, but it's a lot less active at this point. By that I only mean that I recycle leaves, and organic refuse back into my garden but rather than spend a lot of time turning and sifting compost, chopping leaves, etc., I let the leaves break down where they sit.


I do rake up some leaves and put them where I have paths and don't want grass and weeds to grow, and in the spring I will rake them away from bulbs and areas where I want the spring flowers to emerge, but it's a low key effort and depends on strength and how I'm feeling.


The first photo was take this week of my nandina berries. The second shot was taken today from my neighbors sidewalk showing how my nandina hedge provides privacy for my back garden. The two shots above are small areas in my front garden where the leaves are falling in suitable spots with no help from me.


I have a lot of overgrown bushes which provide privacy but also provide homes and shelter for a wide variety of birds. The shot above was taken today of one of my many enormous azaleas. The shot below is of the same azalea from last spring. I get color in the spring and the birds get homes.


On the other side of the same azaleas (also a spring shot) you can see how it provides one side of the privacy screening. Joining the azaleas at a right angle is the nandina hedge pictured in earlier shots.


Below is the seed head from echanasia (purple cone flower) and I shot that today. I let flowers go to seed and leave the seed heads up until the birds have gotten what they want. They always leave enough for new flowers to come up in the spring.


The shot below was taken today and shows about 24 hours worth of leaves in my driveway as I raked yesterday. The leaves all go back into my garden. The bushes at the bottom of my driveway always have nests in the spring and new babies.


The shot below is of the same bushes but was taken in the spring. I was standing in the street facing my house instead of standing at the top of the driveway shooting down like I did in the shot above.


In the shot below (spring of course), I'm facing across my front yard and you can see one of my smaller azaleas (white) which also provides a home for birds.


I think I'll stick with spring for the rest of this post and show more of my bushes/bird homes. I also have nesting boxes which are always used but the overgrown bushes are the mansions.


I used to grow most of my fresh produce in my back garden and used mostly compost from my composting heap for fertilizer. I don't have the energy for the kind of gardening I used to do. The good news is sometimes thinking green means doing less. Less pruning, less watering, less chopping down, can result in a suitable habitat for wildlife and humans alike.


Please visit the home of Nature Note, Signs of the Season, and Green Thinkers for other participants as well as interesting posts with good information for green thinkers and nature lovers.


mommanator said...

beautiful post! pics & words!

Paula Werner Severo said...

wonderfull photos and congratulations for your award! Love to visit your blog!

Nicole said...

Beautiful post!
I like the way you explain it: Doing less is sometimes worth as much as doing more.
I love your overgrown bushes.
I'm a big fan of privacy and wouldn't mind these bushes wherever we go!
Hope your strength will come back to you!

MaR said...

You seem to have a lot of leaves raking to do, Carver! your pictures are beautiful, particularly the spring ones :)

Congrats on your well deserved award!!

Leora said...

So many lovely photos! I love your shot of the dried echinacea (purple cone flower).

I do lazy composting - just pile it up, cover with random garden scraps, and plant in it the next season.

I can understand not having the energy for certain gardening chores. That azalea is huge! I didn't know they could grow so big.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful garden and photos. Love the purple coneflower shot!

ramblingwoods said...

I hadn't really thought about the notion of being 'green' can mean doing less, but you are so right. The neat person in me wants things nice and tidy, but the tired me that is trying to be more green knows that things are best left more on their own. This is the first fall that I am really using leaves in the garden. One of my neighbor's asked me when I was going to rake the leaves out of the garden. I got to say, 'in the spring if they need to be'. lol..

Thank you for accepting the 'Green Thinker' and for adding it to the Nature Notes post.. Michelle

Unknown said...

Your yard looks like heaven to me! Very nice!

Cezar and Léia said...

Wonderful pictures dear friend!
Congratulations for your award, you deserved it a lot!
and...Happy Thanksgiving!

Sarge Charlie said...

Miss Carver I hope you and yours have a wonderful thanksgiving.

Ayie said...

congratulations on your awards!

you have such a lush garden/yard so a lot of raking for you to do =)

Carolyn Ford said...

Beautiful images of the season! Congratulations on your award! Beautiful post!

Jeanne said...

Carver--I'm with you on "less is more" in the garden.

I also rake my leaves to cover the beds that need mulch in winter, and then I rake them away from sprouting bulbs in spring.

I do still have a compost pile though, but I don't spend much time turning it. It just sits there and composts away all on its own!