Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Nature Notes: January ending and a flash to the past

I was startled to look out my bedroom door and spot the hawk sitting on the top of the swingset garden, next to one of the nesting boxes for small birds.


I could hear a lot of chatter coming from the bushes where many of the birds were staying hidden. The chickadee knew she was too small for lunch and wasn't bothered by having a hawk in her garden.


Finally, I decided to approach the hawk so he would fly off and allow the birds seeking cover to come out. He didn't go far, and crouched against a tree limb he was having a bad feather day in the wind.


The next two shots are from ten years ago in July back when my garden was better tended. I thought I'd include them to give a better wide view of the swingset garden area.

The shot above is facing what was once my daughter's swing set and was later incorporated into the garden. The shot below is a side view to include the greenhouse and other raised beds.

The days of the well tended garden are long gone and at this point my garden is wild and mostly self sustaining. I no longer irrigate or grow most of my vegetables. But the birds don't care and other wildlife are happy here.


The shot directly above and the rest of the shots are back to January 2010. I have lots of nesting boxes under the roof as well as the overgrown bushes where the birds nest.


The nesting boxes against the house are more protected than the swing set ones. Last week I talked about using leaves from my front yard to mulch my back yard. There are still plenty of leaves left in the front for that part of my garden.


The smartest thing I ever did was stop trying to grow grass in the front and opt for hostas, periwinkle, ferns, variegated ivy, and other shade perennials as well as some herbs near the street where they get enough sun.


I have noticed that with a mixture of weather from cold to cool to almost warm, there is a lot more signs of life than January usually has, although the ferns and other perennials are asleep for the winter.


I love the way the ivy growing on the side of the house looks but if it gets too thick it will be a problem. Sometimes I think if I totally neglect everything the plants will hold up my little aging house where I've lived since 1984.

The problem with living here as long as I have, improvements I made like creating a garden and adding a greenhouse and storage building are already becoming aged and decrepit, sort of like me. By the way, I don't think my numerical age (52) is old. There are young 70 year old people, and older. I personally feel like I've aged a lot in recent years but that's just me.


For more nature notes people, please visit the host of nature notes.


Caron said...

You are ten years older than I am and I was just talking to a co-worker this morning about how things have changed in the last four years. I don't feel so much as you do, but it is sort of strange when you can actually mark the changes. That didn't happen 20 years ago!

Cezar and Léia said...

Your place is so beautiful, how lucky you are to meet almost face to face this magnificent hawk in your garden!
It's a nice and cool adventure walking with you in this lovely garden and feel all peaceful atmosphere there.Thanks so much for this great sequence of memories and beautiful pictures!

AscenderRisesAbove said...

amazing shot of the hawk; i am lucky if I can catch them in mid air.
loved the yard of leaves; miss that smell. fun using the swing set in the garden -- all should be used there!

Dee said...

Love your pictures, as usual, but the commentary is interesting as well, in terms of the changes you're noticing with when plants bloom and such. Loved the hawk!

Marvin said...

Lovely photos of your place and its flora and fauna.

We moved to this place in Arkansas in 1986. My mind cannot fully accept that I've now lived here longer than my childhood, adolescents and entire time spent living in my parent's home. We chose roof shingle with a 20 year guarantee for this house. At the time of purchase, 20 years into the future seemed like an eternity. Now those shingles need replacing.

Unknown said...

That IS a beautiful yard and house.
No worries about the yard. I think nature is gonna take back her rights sooner or later anyway.
The birdies are smart ones and that hawk is still waiting for an easy Lunch, huh ;)

Cloudia said...

ah the mysteries of plants and human age...
Aloha, Friend!

Comfort Spiral

Unknown said...

On February 2 we are half way to spring...and that means the past becomes out future...doesn't it? :)

Unknown said...

I meant to add, I prefer a wilder garden and I think birds do too!

eileeninmd said...

I love your yard and I'm sure the birds and other wildlife love it too. Great photos and post.

Rambling Woods said...

Carver..I am going to be 54 soon and I do feel older in the last few years...but anyway. I really like that what you have is sustainable. I would love to have a front yard with no grass and I am working on it. It will shock the neighbors but too bad. You also have so many bird houses. I hadn't thought of putting them along the house...great post.. Michelle

DeniseinVA said...

I also love the fact that you have so many bird houses and I love your yard. Your pictures are also a lot of fun to browse through. I will be 60 this summer. When I was young that sounded so old. Now? Heck I'm still a young whippersnapper, in my head anyhow :)