Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pic Today 3/26/11


ON ASSIGNMENT:
BLOG ON HOLD

While on assignment,
this blog temporarily suspended.

No computer, no internet, no blog.

(I shall return.)


Friday, March 25, 2011

Pic Today 3/25/11




DAFFODILS:
SPRING'S DEADLY BEAUTY

It's hard to imagine a Spring
without the color and beauty of the noble daffodil.
With over 1,000 varieties and color combinations
of the ancient daffodil (genus narcissus),
there's a deadly side to this flowering spring bulb.

Daffodil bulbs contain a potent narcotic alkaloid,
and the sap from its flower stems is poisonous.

Roman soldiers carried daffodil bulbs into battle,
and if mortally wounded, they would eat a bulb,
ensuring a painless death.

Daffodil sap is poisonous and will shorten lives
of other cut flowers in arrangements
unless daffodil stems first soak in tepid water for 2 hours.

It's always best to naturalize daffodils in the yard.
This way you can leave the bulbs in the ground,
and let the stems wilt and fade away until next year.
(Just beauty to admire -- no poisons to worry about.)



Thursday, March 24, 2011

Pic Today 3/24/11








RIVER CABIN GETAWAY

There's a place . . . a special place . . .
far away from any city . . .
in the beautiful Missouri wilderness . . .

An old grand cabin,
on the banks of a river,
a spring-fed Ozark stream
full of trout and mussels and craw dads.

Down a winding gravel road,
past limestone bluffs,
on a path barely wide enough to get by,
with a crystal clear spring gurgling year round.

With no phone, no TV, no computers,
just perfect getaway peace
that always refreshes the soul.

It's my river cabin getaway.
And the most powerful medicine I know!




Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Pic Today 3/23/11





FOREST'S FIRST FUNGUS

An early spring hike through the woods
reveals winter's toll on its trees and forest floor,
with little green and no leaves
to hide bare branch or bark.

Many shapes and forms of tree fungi
climb live trees and dead stumps,
and put on a show this time of year.

Winter's freeze and spring's warming thaw create cracks
which are open invitations for parasitic fungus
to grow in brackets, resembling oysters and sea sponges
which can become quite large,
some soft, some hard as wood.

Unlike their edible mushroom cousins,
these tree fungi are usually toxic
and not for the soup pot.


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Pic Today 3/22/11







ROCKS ALONG THE RIVER

Spring floods flush the winter away
and always leave a fresh story
in the rocks, along the shore.

Rocks rearranged in new patterns.
Driftwood left for chilly night campfires.
A sparkling gem for someone's pocket.

The river is clean, once again.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Pic Today 3/21/11





DOWN BY THE RIVER

Escaping to the wilderness,
along an Ozark stream,
on the 1st day of Spring . . .

sprouts and buds exploding with life!
Happy Spring.

"Spring's cool water is sweetest in the Spring."



Sunday, March 20, 2011

Pic Today 3/20/11



SPRING HAS ARRIVED

Today we celebrate the First Day of Spring.
(It seemed to take a very long time to get here.)

It brought a very full, very large moon,
closer to our planet than ever before.
May it also bring joy, love and peace to all nations.

Happy First Day of Spring!

"All through the long winter, I dreamed of my garden.
On the first day of Spring, I dig my fingers deep into the soft earth.
I can feel its energy, and my spirit soars."

-- Helen Hayes


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Pic Today 3/19/11



THERE'LL BE A CHANGE IN THE WEATHER

Have you noticed the changes in weather
are more sudden and abrupt these days?

The National Research Council and EPA have issued
a report which states we can expect
"more spontaneous, sudden and abrupt changes
in our regional weather which are consistent with
the 'greenhouse' warming of our climate.
This can result in heavy precipitation, periods of drought,
heat waves, sporadic cold fronts and intense storm bursts."

Photo #1 -- Early this week, our surprise snow storm
left us covered. Not forecast.

Photo #2 -- 3 days later, exact same location, sunny skies
and record-setting 83˚ heat wave.

(It's hard to know what to wear when you get up!)

"There's a change in the weather,
There's a change in the sea.
So from now on,
There'll be a change in me.
My walk will be different,
My talk not the same.
Nothin' about me
Is going to be the same."

-- Higgins & Overstreet, 1921



Friday, March 18, 2011

Pic Today 3/18/11














PERFECT WEATHER
FOR THIS YEAR'S
ST. PATRICK'S DAY PARADE

Record 83˚ weather drew a huge crowd
to "Dogtown" in St. Louis for this year's
Ancient Order of Hibernian St. Patrick's Day Parade.

Crowds started lining the streets of the parade route
early this morning to view the noon parade
under sunny skies and summer temperatures.

Bagpipes, singers, Irish dancers and musicians
marched and threw green beads to the delight
of the crowd . . .
some of whom were actually Irish.

(No one died of thirst during the event.)






Thursday, March 17, 2011

Pic Today 3/17/11








HAPPY
ST. PATRICK'S
DAY

You don't have to be Irish
to celebrate St. Patty's Day.

It's a phenomenon here
how many people find their "Irish roots"
on this day . . .

wearing something green,
giving gifts of shamrocks
(or green teddy bears!),
sporting outlandish hats and shirts,
sipping Irish tea and crumpets,
chugging pints of Guinness
(or green beer -- really!)
singing Irish songs
and greeting the Spring
with a wink and a drink.

So whether you're from the 'old sod' or not,
here's an Irish toast for you this fine day:

"Dance as if no one were watching,
Sing as if no one were listening,
And live every day as if it were your last."

Cheers!







Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Pic Today 3/16/11




WHILE WE'RE WAITING FOR SPRING,
THERE'S "CALADIUM"

Now's the time to start planning your "jungle,"
be it inside or outside.
And what better way to plant something grand
than to buy some giant Caladium bulbs.
These monster tubers go on sale in March,
and are ready to plant when there's no danger of freezing.
(That means when WINTER IS FINISHED.)

Caladiums come out of their dormant period in March
and can be planted indoors or out.
These giant jungle dwellers have earned their common name,
Elephant Ears, because they DO get that big
and provide great atmosphere to your garden.
So give them lots of room, and stand back . . .

They'll have you forgetting about cold, snowy weather!