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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

GARDEN FRIEND

Our Good Garden Friend
Photo Taken in My Garden
Wolf Spider
 Pordosa milvina (?)
The large wolf spider, pictured above, was photographed while  running through our garden. It is a female about the size of a fifty cent piece, without the sac. That big light-colored sac she is always hauling around is full of Wolf Spider eggs.


Ms Wolf Spider knows when the eggs have reached maturity. At that point she rips open the silk sac and out spills about a hundred babies -- that quickly crawl on her back -- sometimes positioning themselves in layers so they have enough room for everyone.  They ride on her back for about a week and then she releases them so they can fend for themselves. 


Female Wolf Spiders are known for their care of their offspring.



If you like to work outside, especially in a garden, you undoubtedly have become acquainted with this friend.of the natural world. There are 2,500 species world wide.

They mainly live outdoors but occasionally work themselves into a home. They are shy and will run from you especially if confronted. They rarely bite but if they do so it is not considered serious unless you are allergic. 



The spider's diet includes flea hoppers, insect eggs, crickets, locusts, ants and other spiders.  Overall spiders are beneficial to the ecosystem. 

When we know the behavior of an animal, such as a spider, we can feel comfortable when we meet them in nature. 

RESOURCES:



Friday, June 24, 2011

TREE WISDOM


Our roots anchor us to the land as does roots for a tree. Rootedness is a testament to  wisdom within a tree as it is also to ourselves. It settles our inner being -- it survives  storms,  winds,  pollution, and human disruption. 


Roots can be complex. They can be entrenched. Yet remember that sunshine produces a tree -- as it also produces us. 


No matter how you germinate in life -- with scars, with tangled roots, with love, with spirituality -- wisdom grows. Like the tree.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

SHAKER STILLNESS

ON A WINDOW LEDGE

BY A WINDOW

LIGHT IS SUBDUED
CENTRE FAMILY DWELLING 1824-1834
SHAKER VILLAGE, PLEASANT HILL, KENTUCKY

CURBSIDE TOMATO CAGES

LARGE STURDY TOMATO CAGES


Hand made tomato cages made out of tough wire fencing are better than the light weight Home Depot or Lowes cages. I picked up eight of these cages  at a residential curbside. They were waiting for the weekly trash pickup truck. 

Why couldn't small towns have donation centers where folks can pick through the "one man's trash is another man's treasures." Would be a recycling bonaza. I heard of one city landfill that adopted a program of having shelves in a shed near the landfill site where , instead of books being thrown away, they would be shelved and re-purposed free to the town folks. it resulted in many books being saved.

Maybe some towns do similar programs?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

RILKE AND FLOWERS


ChicoryField
WILD CHICORY FLOWERS

See the flowers, so faithful to Earth.
We know their fate because we share it.
Were they to grieve for their wilting,
that grief would be ours to feel . . .

If you could enter their dreaming and dream with them deeply,
you would come back different to a different day,
moving so easily from that common depth.

Or maybe just stay there: they would bloom and welcome you,
all those brothers and sisters tossing in the meadows,
and you would be one of them.

 Sonnets to Orpheus by Rainer Maria Rilke,
 In Praise of Mortality by Anita Barrows & Joanna Macy

Daylillies2011RoccastleCounty
WILD DAYLILIES


Friday, June 17, 2011

AN OLD PORCH ROCKER AND AN OLD USED FACADE



Now used for storage, this old building has served its community well. It was once a school house then a general store and lastly an antique store. Now it serenely sits out its days providing a scenic "window" into the past of Mt Vernon, Kentucky.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

CHARMING COUNTRY PICKET FENCE

Fences come in all sizes and shapes. Some are store-bought, some designed by general fencing contractors, and of course some by the home handy-person. 

My daughter designed and laid-out a lovely fence years ago. Together with her husband and boys they  installed the fence and had many stories to tell about its construction. Her family working together not only created stories to tell but provided lasting warm family memories. 


A few weeks ago I stumbled across a  homemade picket fence in Madison County. Although it was different than my daughters it had the hand of the maker's "signature" on it. Its  personal touch could be seen on the pickets and the picket gate. It was charming in its country setting.



I surmised that the fence had been in place a couple of  years at least. Its precut pickets appeared to be from a lumber store and stood about four feet high. Unpainted, they looked weathered and aged.   The gate had some blue paint applied on its upright gate posts which blended with the graying of the pickets.

One could say this is just another fence but I feel homemade anything brings life into the equation. Surely, you must have several homemade items that when viewed are more than just objects -- you may see, hear, and feel the objects almost as if they were living. 


Sunday, June 12, 2011

WHERE HAVE ALL THE SCARECROWS GONE -- LONG TIME PASSING

HUMOROUS SCARECROW THAT HAS LOST HIS PANTS
CORN PATCH, ROCKCASTLE, COUNTY, KENTUCKY
Last year, in conjunction with gardens, I posted about homemade scarecrows. I have a thing about scarecrows -- they are so traditional for our gardens and best of all I have sweet memories of my my dad making homemade scarecrows.


In the last two years I have only found two homemade scarecrows. Yesterday made number three.


I noticed number three standing in a corn patch a couple miles from my home. He was quite humorous and I believe embarrassed as he stood there with no pants. This morning I woke up and went to the corn patch and snapped the above photo. It was taken from a distance so it is not as sharp as I like my photos to be. But, it's a scarecrow, a rare commodity around these parts. 


My question is -- have folks given up this wonderful artful tradition? 


Below are the two scarecrows that I have found in this area in the last couple years. I search personally for them when I am out and about. I also ask locals if they know of any and usually get a friendly smile saying -- nope haven't seen any lately. 



HOMEMADE FARMER SCARECROW
MADISON COUNTY, KENTUCKY



ARTISTIC RENDITION OF A WOMAN GARDENER SCARECROW
BEREA, KENTUCKY -- COMMUNITY GARDEN

I hope that this scarecrow tradition is not disappearing from our landscape. I don't want to sing my take-off of Pete Seeger's song -- "Where have all the scarecrows gone, Long time ago."

Thursday, June 9, 2011

FLOUR SACKS AND A HISTORIC MILL

GarrardMillFeedBag-1
1924 Garrard Mill Paper Bag
 
At one time, many grist mills were located in rural settled areas where they milled grains. This provided fresh grains in the form of flour, feed, and  meal. 

Local farmers brought their grain harvest to the mill and paid for the milling by giving the miller a portion of his harvest. The grist mill miller turned around and sold his share to area folks and  commercial establishments.


The 1901 Garrard Mill in Lancaster, Kentucky,  marked their grain bags with their logo (see above photo). They  also packed their flour in cotton cloth bags of various colored patterns -- women used this cloth to sew clothes or make quilts.
MillGarrard-1
1901 Garrard Mill, Lancaster, Kentucky
The  Garrard Mill established delivery routes, much like the milk-man routes, which delivered the products of the mill. Grains were delivered in the logo printed large paper bags and flour in the patterned cotton cloth sacks.  Women would request certain patterns of the cotton cloth sacks for home projects they were working on. A common name for these cotton sacks was 'flour sacks." There was a ledger kept by the Garrard Mill with the customer's name and the type of patterns they needed. If the right patterns came along they would be delivered StripQuiltCL to the customer .

Just perhaps some of the strip quilts that we see today have pieces of flour sack material in them?

Garrard Grist Mill was built in 1901 and was sold at auction in the latter part of the twentieth century. It is now in private hands and no longer mills for the area.


The Garrard Mill is listed on the National Register of Historic Places



Resources:
Margaret Simson, Garrard Historical Society

Southern Folk Art and Antiques -- Photo -- Garrard Mill Bag

Saturday, June 4, 2011

A TINY STORE

TINY STORE

Take a ride in the country on a nice afternoon and you might get lost too. That is what I did last weekend. But getting lost is fun if you have enough gas in your car as I did that day. I made the wrong turn as I was headed home and ended up cruising the Daniel Boone Forest for a few hours. 


Not all was lost as I saw some great sites, had my son as company, and had my camera. At one point we discovered  this lovely quaint small town called Livingston and noticed a tiny store attached to a large commercial building. 


I thought -- now here is a really small business. Didn't stop to visit as it was getting to the point that I wondered if I would be roaming these mountains until dark.  Next time I'm in Livingston I will check it out.  


Getting lost can be OK under the right conditions as it was for us last week