Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mystery Plant Solved for Green Thumb Sunday

Mystery Plant Solved for Green Thumb Sunday

a green spike plant pod

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In last week's post I was hoping to find out the name of the plant in the photo.

I am happy to say that my readers are a lot smarter than me, and the first commenter had the correct name for it.

Lynda, over at Peripheral Vision - Inner Sights by Lynda Lehmann knew right off that it was Jimson Weed.

Several other posters also recognized it and I thank everyone who responded.

Well, from reading the wiki on this plant, I discovered a few things about it.

See that photo above? My husband had a heck of a time cutting that spiky thing in half so I could take a photo it of it.

We handled it quite a bit, and I even took some of the seeds from the dried pods so I could try planting some of them.

Come to find out - every part of this plant is poisonous and may be fatal if ingested.

Now we were not stupid enough to start eating it, but I know that some things can be absorbed through the skin - we were lucky that we didn't get sick from them.

I never planted the seeds, and when I come across them this spring in my gardening tote, I will trash them immediately.

I think that next time we come across a new plant that looks so forboding, we will heed it's spiky warning and leave it alone - photos on the bush will be just fine!

Friday, March 27, 2009

A New Feature - Friday's Photo Tip

Friday's Photo Tip

low river landscape with blue sky and white clouds

I have been very lucky to have some great readers to my blog over the last two years.

During that time, I have had many questions regarding different photography topics, terms, equipment, and techniques.

I am always glad to help out when I can, and when you see the enthusiasm for learning that some people have, it is contagious - you just want to share.

I don't have a lot of knowledge regarding the different camera brands and all their features and such, but I do have a pretty good understanding of the photography basics that can be applied to any camera.

And I do have such a love for this art.

I have decided to add a new type of post to my blog, and I figured Friday would be the best day to do it.

I will be making these posts photography related, and I will do my best to use my images to illustrate the subject.

I invite any questions from my readers, and I will answer and explain what I know.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Something New and Different

Something New and Different

cement dock on the rocks at the ocean

I have just been invited to check out and comment on a new website that has been established since July of 2008.

I get quite a few emails that contain requests for links or memberships. Some I give a quick look and into the trash they go, and others I will seriously investigate and then make my decision.

This request really intrigued me since it deals with photography, and looking further into it, I discovered it is more of a news site that is designed for amateur and pro photographers alike.

The main focus of this site is citizen participation in reporting the news online.

It sounds like a really different concept, and they have several categories that one can submit their photos to with a short caption to go with it.

They feature the best of each day on their homepage, which can bring added exposure for our own websites as well.

They are also sponsoring a Photo Contest with a certain theme and they will be giving away several great prizes that any photographer would be happy to win.

There is some really great photography on this site, and it is good to see regular people having their work promoted and getting some well deserved exposure.

Of course, I have already signed up, and since I never leave the house without my camera anyway - you just never know.


Wednesday, March 25, 2009

ABC Wednesday - J is for Jewelry

J is for Jewelry............

a jade and pearl necklace entwined

These are two of my favorite necklaces - both of them in the beaded style.

I entwined them to create this image as I have always liked the colors of them together.

My husband gave me both of them - the pearls were a gift a couple of years after we were married.

The gorgeous jade was given to me as a gift about 10 years ago. He had picked them up at an estate sale and was very happy to surprise me with them.

I love the old things the best - the care and obvious love that the former owner had for the jade is quite visible from the excellent condition it is in.

The history and stories they have is something I wonder about, but will not know.

Hopefully my daughter will cherish them someday as I have also.

This is the fourth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Mysterious Spike Plant for Green Thumb Sunday

Mysterious Spike Plant for Green Thumb Sunday

a green spike plant pod

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I have a mystery that I am hoping someone can help me solve.

I found this plant last autumn while we were vising the ocean.

These green spiky plant pods were growing in the rocks and grass right before it all turned into the sandy beach.

They were in all stages of development - the plant had flowers, these green spikes, and dried brown pods that were shriveled and splitting open.

The plant only grew about 3 feet tall - it was a rather low, brush type.

I am really interested in finding out what it is, and if anyone has any idea, I would be most thankful!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

ABC Wednesday - I is for Ice Formations

I is for Ice Formations.............

needle ice formations

This is a piece of Needle Ice that formed just beneath the surface of the soil last autumn.

When the temp is just right - usually just after the first night that gets down below 32 degree, these icicles form.

They are usually much smaller than this piece - there must have been a lot of water to make them so large.

They are really easy to find also - you feel them just under the soil as you walk along. They raise the surface, and when you step on them, they all crackle and break.

It all feels very uneven on the feet.

We carefully removed these ones from the soil, and since the air had begun to warm up, you can see the tips of them melting.

So fragile looking these thin little strips of ice that have banded together.

Have you ever felt these ices under your feet after a freeze?

This is the fourth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Many Gulls for Green Thumb Sunday

Many Gulls for Green Thumb Sunday

many gulls standing on a rock at the ocean

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Last week the sea gulls were floating around in the cove on the incoming tide.

This week's post is showing where they are all hanging out - at least until the tide is full.

They were coming and going - spending time on the water looking for food and then taking the time to preen or nap.

If you look at the larger image (by clicking on the photo), you will see some with their heads tucked under their wings - secure that the rest will let them know of danger.

Some are sitting on the rocks - enjoying the warmth they have to offer - some of them are standing on one leg in the typical bird sleeping position.

There is a "pecking order" to this group, as there often is in the bird world - and my guess for the leader would be one of those sitting ones - napping on the highest, driest spot.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Overlooking the Park

Overlooking the Park

cement dock on the rocks at the ocean

This is another post relating to the park with the cement dock.

That dock is just off to the left of this image - jutting out from the rocks.

You can see the Whaleback Lighthouse on the horizon.

This is just a small piece of the park. There is a lot more grass off to the right, and in the center of the park there is a playground area for the kids.

I can remember as a kid growing up, my brother and myself would bicycle the six miles here just about every night in the summer. We loved it here once everyone had left for the day.

My family and I get to the ocean a couple times a year these days, and we usually stop in at the park on one of those times.

The park itself has changed over the years, but the beautiful views and the memories will always remain.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

ABC Wednesday - H is for Horseshoe

H is for Horseshoe.............

a horse shoe on a stone fireplace mantle

A rusty old horseshoe was placed in the wet cement of this huge fireplace back in the late 1800's.

This fireplace now stands in an open field, as a fire destroyed the wood lodge that it was a part of many, many years ago.

The field and surrounding log cabins are now owned by the town and the grounds are considered public now, with marked trails through the woods, and fishing in the pond.

Seeing this shoe in the old field stone fireplace made me wonder what the story behind it is.

I am thinking that since horseshoes are known for good luck, perhaps that is what the owners were thinking when they put it there.

Perhaps it was a shoe from a beloved horse, or since it is a rather odd shaped one, perhaps that's the reason why it was placed there.

None of the original owners or their descendants are alive as this land was given to the town years ago, so I don't think we will ever know the story.

What do you think the story might be?

This is the fourth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Gulls in the Cove for Green Thumb Sunday

Gulls in the Cove for Green Thumb Sunday

gulls swimming in the ocean cove

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First, I must apologize for missing last Sunday and not posting a Green Thumb image. I had promised to show what the little ocean creatures in the seaweed were hiding from, and I am sorry for the longer wait.

Well, this week, I will make that entry, and as you can see from the image above, it's these seagulls.

Now, all looks nice and peaceful as they float along on the top, in and out of the seaweed beds, but don't let them fool you.

They were bobbing up and down with their heads ducking under water and coming up with small morsels. And they were doing this at a very frantic pace so there must have been quite a bit hiding in the seaweed.

Oh, and it looks like there are only a few eating at this time - but they have a system and in the photo that I will post next week, I would say they have an hierarchy too.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Cement Dock on the Rocks

Cement Dock on the Rocks

cement dock on the rocks at the ocean

A few of my previous posts were about standing on a dock at the ocean and showing the view in different directions.

This is the dock. It is built on huge boulders and acts as a breaker of sorts to the small beach that I am taking this photo from.

If you click on the image to view a bigger size, you will see a small bridge with railings.

That part is fairly new and has been added within the last couple of years. It was always just a few wood planks that had stood the test of time for many years. They finally must have given out.

The tide is still coming in as you can see from the seaweed still floating along the rocks. Once it is completely high, none of that seaweed will be showing - just the beautiful blue ocean water.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

ABC Wednesday - G is for Geode

G is for Geode.............

a blue and white geode rock

This slice of rock is about one quarter of an inch thick.

It has always looked like a piece of glass to me, but it is actually a geode.

It is a solid one that was able to be sliced thin by a diamond cutting wheel.

Most people think of geodes in the form of an open crystal, like an amethyst.

I do not know the name of the minerals in this stone, or even what kind of geode that it is classified as, but I do so love the colors - especially when it is held in the light.

If you click on the photo, it will bring you my site where you can view it enlarged. There is a thin layer of the outside rock along the top, and you will see the layers of the blue and the intricate white center.

The outside rock looks like a regular rock - it makes me wonder sometimes if I have ever passed any of these as I take my daily walks, or hike along trails in the woods.

I probably have - but in their whole form I would never even begin to recognize one!

This is the fourth round of ABC Wednesday. If you would like to join in please visit this site for the details.


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