HUNGRY BIRDS, STARVING SQUIRRELS — Marilyn Armstrong

The Starving Wildlife

I think we are squirrel central for Massachusetts. They hang out on the steps to the deck, on the beams under the deck and in the tree overlooking the deck. They are always nearing starvation even as their coats grow thick and glossy and their bellies become perfectly well-rounded.

Two Titmice arriving for dinner. I swear one of them is flying upside down!

As soon as I finally chase the squirrels away … and these days it takes both Garry and me making a direct appearance at the fence and sometimes, the feeder — birds by the dozens fly in.

Three Blue Jays actually attacked a squirrel today. You gotta hand it to the squirrels. If three Blue Jays went after me, I’d run for the hills. This guy just kept eating. Blue Jays are big, strong birds with long beaks. That was one hard-headed squirrel.


I got pictures. I didn’t get all the birds because they are flying in or falling off the feeding in every direction, but I got some interesting ones. I certainly didn’t get all the squirrels. You might think all squirrels look alike, but they don’t. I think I’m going to have to start giving them names.

Missing are the Doves (but they are around, just not today), the yellow Goldfinch (still on their way back from Canada?) and I think the Jays pushed the Cowbirds out of the area for the moment.

One more Blue Jay

Blue Jays are grumpy, aggressive and rather large (11 to 12 inches) birds and since this year — unlike last year — they’ve decided this is the place to BE, they have arrived like an army battalion.

Dinner time for birds

Today there were as many as five or six lined up on the fence rail. Once I saw two of them on the feeder, but one pecked the other, and then there was one.

Cee suggested that seeds are okay and I realized “Hey, there are enough seeds for a forest of miscellaneous plants.” So, no flowers, but lots and lots of SEEDS.

A SUNDAY LOOK AT THE INDOOR GARDEN – Marilyn Armstrong

An Indoor Garden – 11-3-2019

Taking pictures of birds today, I stopped and took some pictures of my indoor garden. The purple orchids are finally falling, but there are new shoots that I hope will replace them. And there are a lot of shoots on the other orchid too.

November and I bet there will be buds on the Christmas cacti soon. They sure do look healthy. Maybe too healthy. It’s time to water them less often I think.

A vertical look at my indoor garden

And then, this is what our woods looks like today. You can see how the oaks are all bronze. This is the month of the golden woods.

Downy Woodpecker in golden woods

MAPLE LEAVES BEFORE THE RAIN AND WIND – Marilyn Armstrong

FOTD – October 26, 2019 – Maple Leaves

We have so many autumn pictures between what I’ve taken and Garry’s collection, I haven’t even had time to fully skim them. So here are a bunch of them — mine and his — and I think we’ve taken our full quote of autumn pictures.

There’s another big storm on the way on Sunday, so I’m not counting on there being much left when it is finished.

Another picture of the first Quaker Meetinghouse, built 1770. If they could afford to install heating, the church would see a lot of use, but it is very cold in there and it’s now only used for weddings or other special events.

AUTUMN FOLIAGE – Marilyn Armstrong

As good as it gets 

The rain and the wind came and went and surprisingly, we still have a lot of foliage left. I expected to find it all on the ground today. There is a lot of it on the ground, but more of it is still on the trees.

So, from the beautiful wooded Blackstone Valley, here is our Autumn — as good as it gets.

Garry took a lot of these pictures, too. He was out on the road and this time, he took the camera with him!

THE MAPLE TREE IN THE FRONT YARD – Marilyn Armstrong

MORE AUTUMNAL COLORS!

It’s a lot harder to get the colors right on the photograph that one might think. Especially the reds. They may look like red to your eyes, but to the camera, they appear closer to bronze-brown. The problem is that leaves are a mix of colors, including more orange than red and a sizable dollop of yellow and magenta.

I took a bunch of pictures and I spent hours trying to make the colors look the way they looked to me. They don’t exactly, but they are close. Regardless, they are as close as I could get them.

My house with its maple tree. I couldn’t get the red correct without making the house look really strange. Sorry about that.

Much closer, but still more orange than red. Pretty, though.

This is relatively accurate, though the reds are a bit too orangy.

Still maple. Maybe a bit more red?

This is close to the real color, but it blocked out all the other colors!

This may be the closest to the real color. Not as dark a red color, but the range of colors is right.

 

THEN IT WAS AUTUMN AFTER ALL – Marilyn Armstrong

October 19, 2019 – Autumn Leaves

It looked hopeless. It was a month late and there was so much rain. And it was warm too late into the season. So most of us — especially me — sighed and decided we weren’t going to get a real Autumn this year. Kind of like last year where it just never happened.

Instead, after a huge storm of torrential rain and high wind — the kind of storm that usually knocks the leaves off the trees and gives us naked limbs. But that’s not what happened.

The deep orange maple over the little house with the blue door

Golden leaves in October

Wide view of the old stone bridge, river, and canal

Along the canal pathway

The storm came. It went and suddenly, it’s really Fall. The colors are up. It was impossible — but it happened anyway.

THE PURPLE ORCHID – Marilyn Armstrong

New Orchids in the Little Garden –  09/12/19

I couldn’t have hinted any louder and Garry got the point. Yesterday, he brought home a new set of orchids for me in a rich purple.

All the others were pink and I think one was white.

He brought me the purple ones. They have a few buds on them, so I hope to have them for a while.

My purple orchid

CEE’S FOTD – WILDFLOWERS ALONG THE RIVER – Marilyn Armstrong

Wildflowers along the river as August ends

If we hadn’t been afraid of getting bitten by mosquitoes carrying lethal enchephalitis, it would have been a perfect day to take pictures of the flowers on the river. Everything was in full bloom. Pink, white, red, golden … I don’t know the names of anything, but I love the way the wildflowers line the river banks as if some talented gardener arranged it all.

#FOTD – THE FLOWERS AT RIVERSIDE – Marilyn Armstrong

Flowers in the Medieval Garden at Riverside Healthcare

I lost a bunch of pictures from this chip be inadvertently deleting a folder. But they had some lovely flowers and these are the pictures that I didn’t delete. Sorry about that! It’s a mistake I’ve made before and every time I do it, I kick myself around the room.

And our lovely Renegade surrounded by flowers:

Renegade and flowers

LITTLE WHITE ASTERS – Marilyn Armstrong

Little White Asters – FOTD – July 6, 2019

Amidst the myriad tall green and orange Daylilies, the asters continue to grow. Taller than they usually stand, they have spread out all around the garden.

It’s a nice touch, those delicate little white flowers in the breaks between the tall daylilies, some of which have reached at least my height and a few are taller.

Tomorrow, it will rain, but Sunday I can get back to the garden and see what is growing!

Asters growing amidst the daylilies

More asters

DAYLILIES WITH BUDS – Marilyn Armstrong

FOTD – July 5, 2019 – Daylily

It’s definitely the season of the daylilies. They really are everywhere. I keep trying to find new ways to take pictures of daylilies that don’t look exactly like the last set of daylilies, but so far … well … they look like daylilies. In particular, the leggy tall ones we grow locally.

More Daylilies — and an old tractor

Buds and Daylily

BLOOMING CACTUS AGAIN – Marilyn Armstrong

Blooming Red Cactus Flower – FOTD – 05/10/19

Just as the pink ones died off, the red ones bloomed. It’s been a really big year for cactus flowers. I don’t think I’ve ever had them bloom so frequently or so plentifully.

How about a few pictures? These are all macros. I got revved up and changed the lens!

Amazing, eh?

That’s some cactus flower!

A bloom and a big bud

The color is perfectly red. Or is it scarlet?