Rex in Peace

Our old Ohio friend Rex has died, after a long, painful struggle with pervasive cancer.  He chose the hospice route back home with family in Indiana, rather than the grueling, unaffordable ordeal of chemo/radiation.

We had lost touch with him, but missed the many happy times we spent hanging out at his house, meeting his friends, or doing repairs/maintenance he needed.  He had a beautiful front sunroom full of tropical plants, where I was always taking photos, when I wasn’t playing with his two cats, or drinking the scotch he generously kept refilling.  He was a lovely person.  I’m sad, but happy he’s finally in peace.

Here are some of his flowers, plants, and cats, from pleasanter times, in his memory.

 

Southern Hiber Nation

It is frigid out there.  It’s not supposed to be frigid down here!  Nothing for it but to hibernate more, and dream of native wildflowers stratifying down below.

These tulips are fooled!  I wish I could feel as blissfully ignorant.

Here’s Misu watching the sun come up.  She thinks she wishes she could be out there.

I’ll just say I hope that evil orange clown gets everything he deserves, and we can get back to restoring some sanity on our planet before it’s too late.  I try to believe there’s some justice left in the world.  And now back to Hiber Nation.

Cold Storage

It’s COLD.  I don’t do cold.  There are even flakes!  We are hibernating.  Nothing to see here, it’s all frozen.  I’ve run out of things to photograph.  Even Misu is scrunched up behind me on this chair to keep warm!  She makes a great butt-warmer.

There’s only one thing for it…a seed catalog.  Almost time for my first 2020 order.  Where there are seeds, there is hope.  (I heartily recommend Annie’s Heirloom Seeds, by the way. It’s where I get most of my veg seeds.)

…and Now Back to Freezing

Spring in winter was too good to last, so now it’s dropping down to below average temps, now that all the spring bulb shoots have shot up.  On the other hand, native wildflower seeds require a period of freezing for stratification and eventual germination.  So I guess it all balances out in the end.

Inside, bulb flowers continue to bloom, and Misu continues to make clever forts and lounge about.  She seems almost resigned to her indoor fate.  Yesterday a guy working on the vacated house dropped by to report on his scary encounter with the gigantic raccoon in their shed, and Misu didn’t even bolt for the open door.  She has been assimilated.

Cold and Flowery

Our spring in winter seems to have reverted back to just winter for now.  So how am I able to find flowers?  By trickery, something you have to work at in winter.  Here are: fragrant hyacinths, a yellow cabbage family flower persisting in the veg garden, crocuses closed back up in the cold, and a delicate chive flower in my “greenhouse”.

My son is back from his latest adventures, and over for the traditional erev meal, work, and hangout, which makes me happy as usual.  Misu is pleased.

 

Spring Rains in Jan.

It’s been raining and thunderstorming for days, it seems, while temps remain unseasonably warm.  Today may reach 68º.  It’s hard not to turn thoughts to spring gardening.  Pretty soon I’ll be ordering my seeds.

Accordingly, we bought new grow-lights and set them up for germinating veg transplants in coming weeks.  My current plants look a lot happier.

Misu, meanwhile, has been finding ways to amuse herself and us–trying on a new box, watching squirrel tv and cat IMAX, and hanging out with me as I write.

 

Buzzard Landing

Normally I see lots of ravens congregating right outside my office window (no doubt drawn by all the bones I set out there), but just now a giant pterodactyl-looking thing with a huge wingspan landed right in a tree in our yard.  It looked like a buzzard.  All the ravens were pestering it, and finally it took off across the field, with them in pursuit.  My phone cam couldn’t quite capture a good closeup, but here’s a silhouette, with ravens for size comparison.

 

 

Gardening in Jan.

Well, I did get out there yesterday and garden somewhat.  I cleaned up the veg bed and raked some manure and mulch onto it.  At least it looks better.  Now if I can just get stuff to grow.

Elsewhere on the property, spring bulbs are shooting up everywhere; it’s going to be an explosion of color come spring, whenever that is.  It’s hard to know anymore.

The Squirrel Channel

This is Misu’s favorite channel, streaming live and free all day–Squirrel TV!  Often a whole crowd shows up.  Once in a while, a chipmunk or some bluejays make an appearance.

Not much else happening–we survived the high winds and t-storms last night, with over 1/2″ of rain in a short time.  Other places weren’t so fortunate.  There were many unseasonal tornadoes throughout the south, with some deaths.  There were extreme winds and flooding in much of the country.  Disasters are becoming more frequent and destructive.

Today and tomorrow will be in the 60s.  It seems to be a trend.  I may have to break down and find some gardening to do.