Soggy in the South

February 5, 2010

There sure seems to be a lot of rain lately.  Of course, I guess that’s better than the snow some places are getting.  But it’s awfully soggy around here.

Toby and I went for a walk to the mailbox, which means going by the pond.

Pond and flood waters over road.

Rain, pond and flood waters.

As usual when it rains for any length of time, the creek is backed up and overflowing across the road.

Water from backed up creek flowing over road.

Creek waters overflowing across road.

Also as usual, there is a big chunk of tree stuck in front of the openings of the culverts under the road.

Tree floating in front of culvert in flood water.

Tree stuck in front of culvert.

Of course our farm collie Toby doesn’t mind traipsing through a little flood waters!

Toby, our farmcollie, walking on flooded road.

Toby walking through flood waters.

In fact, he considers it such a leisurely stroll, he even stops to get a drink.

Our farm collie gets a drink from flood waters.

Ummm, flood water is a nice treat!

And since HE is walking through flood waters, well he figures the human should too.

Farm collie looking back.

"Well, are you coming???"

Okay, okay, what’s it matter if I get cold, wet feet!  I’m coming already!

It’s snowing!

January 29, 2010

It started snowing here a while ago, and it’s coming down pretty FAST for our part of the world!

This poor cardinal is braving the snow to wait his turn at the feeders.

Cardinal bird in snow storm.

And there’s snow on the ground around the pond…

But the snow doesn’t keep the sheep from getting out!

And the chickens are standing around under the bird feeders hoping for a treat…

Chickens, hens and rooster, in the snow.

Even Toby likes to play out in the snow!

Toby the farm collie out in the snow.

That’s it for now!  If it keeps snowing like this, I might have to go out in the woods later and get some pictures!

Enjoy your weekend!

How Cold Is It?

January 5, 2010

Well, of course it’s all relative.  For our kids in Canada, this isn’t such cold weather.  But for us thin-blooded southerners, it is tooooooo cold!

By our standards, it’s supposed to at least get above freezing during the day here, but it’s the middle of the day and the thermometer isn’t moving up far enough for that.

Thermometer at 22 degrees F.

The weatherman says we’re not going to get that extra 10 degrees today.

It’s so cold Samson, our male llama, doesn’t bother to stand up to eat his hay.

Male llama, Samson

I guess he figures there’s no need to get his legs and belly cold!

It’s so cold our little heater isn’t keeping the water thawed in the birdbath. . .

Patially frozen water in birdbath.

Of course, we DO have a better heater somewhere around here.  Last spring The Farmer put it away somewhere he knew he’d be able to find it.  There’s just one wee problem… we can’t find it.

It’s so cold that the broad-leaved evergreens all have droopy leaves. . .

Rosebay Rhododendron in winter.

This Rosebay Rhododendron looks kind of pitiful, as does the leather leaf mahonias, azaleas and what not.

It’s so cold the pond surface is more than half frozen.

Pond with icy surface.

If we’ve got to have a frozen pond, it’d be more fun if the ice was thick enough for ice skating.  However, it certainly has the turtles basking log frozen in place.

Sunning log frozen in ice.

I’m thinking we’re not going to see any of the turtles out sunbathing anytime soon.

It’s so cold the water is frozen solid in the tub on the back porch.

Tub of frozen water on back porch.

Usually the water spouting out of the frog’s mouth keeps enough flow to keep the water from freezing.  Instead it just made a little pile of ice and finally quit running altogether.

It’s so cold our Maremma sheepdog, Neffie, is staying huddled in a corner instead of perched on top of a hill keeping watch.

Maremma sheepdog, Nefie, curled up to stay warm.

It’s so cold our llamas have started using pallets as windbreaks.

Llama resting behind pallet windbreak.

Most of the time they don’t pay attention to the cold since they have some pretty thick wool.  But for now, they’re avoiding the cold as much as possible!

It’s so cold. . . well, you get the idea.  We’re not used to such shivery weather.

Is it time for spring yet?

Underwater Pond Plants

December 15, 2009

Or maybe I should have titled this, “I Can See Clearly Now” . . .

Cause the rain was gone, and sometimes when it hasn’t rained for a while, the farm pond water gets nice and clear.  Then you can see all the plants that are growing underwater.

Underwater Pond Plants

Of course, this time of year there are also a lot of fallen leaves in the pond.  There’s still some algae growing too.

Underwater pond plants and fallen leaves.

I think it looks kind of pretty with the colored leaves floating on top, and then the green plants growing in the water underneath.

Underwater pond plants with fallen leaves floating on surface.

Unfortunately, most of the time the water isn’t clear enough to see down into the pond.  And even when it’s clear, you can only see around the edges, and not in the deeper water.

Maybe someday we’ll try stocking the pond with some fish, but for now it has a large population of frogs and turtles.

This clear vision of the underwater pond plants doesn’t usually last long, but I enjoy it when I can!

First Frosty Fall Morning

October 19, 2009

Okay, The Farmer says he saw some frost yesterday morning, but I didn’t see it, so I’m counting today as the first frost of this season.  Which I’d call a good sign of fall!

And yes, I know.  Some places have already had snow.  But then some places will never see frost.  As the real estate people are fond of saying, “Location, location, location.”

When The Farmer left for work this morning, the pond was steaming.

Steam Rising Off Pond

I thought that was kind of cool, so I grabbed my camera and went out to see what other signs of fall I could see.

Frosty wool on sheep seems like a pretty good sign of fall.

Sheep With Frosty Wool

They actually seem to enjoy the frosty weather, and get rather frisky this time of year.

There are still some blooms hanging on the camellia bush.  I took a few pictures of frosty blossoms, but then I noticed this one particular flower in the shadows with a cold critter in residence:

Frosty Camellia Blossom With Cold Bee

I think the bee is in semi-hibernation there, waiting for the sun to warm it back up.

The sun was quickly melting the frost off plants, but there was still a little on the tea viburnum:

Frosty Tea Viburnum (Viburnum setgerum)

Down in the bottom pasture, sunlight was shining and little frost remained.  However, at the edge of the woods, a frosty vine was looping through one of the trees.

Frosty Vine

As for other signs of fall, well, the leaves have fallen off the walnut trees.  They’re the last to get leaves in the spring, and the first to lose them in the fall.  Go figure.  And of course, there are walnuts all over the ground, not to mention acorns and hickory nuts.  And we have a little fall color:

Red Leaves

Unfortunately, that may be ALL the fall color we get.  The leaves around here are more prone to just turn brown and fall off.  I do miss the vibrant fall colors seen further north!

Cooler days and dead leaves and occasionally some frost . . . I guess that’s as much signs of fall as we’ll probably see!