Sunday, August 28, 2011

New Wildflowers: Mentzelia Species

These top two photos are of flowers growing
at Capulin Volcano, New Mexico.
They are some form of Mentzelia (blazing star)-
possibly Mentzelia multiflora,
but I have had a hard time finding a good match
in my flower books.

The bottom two are also a Mentzelia species,
Mentzelia nuda, or sand lily.
There was a great website on Kansas flowers
that showed me a good match.
These particular flowers were photographed in Nebraska,
near Chimney Rock,
but I saw them growing in Kansas as well.

Both types were totally new to me.
And gorgeous!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Utah's Summer Delicacies: The Crenshaw Melon

Utah is terrific for fruit growing.
One of the best regional specialties is melons,
especially in the Green River area.
Melons like sandy soil and lots of water,
and the town of Green River has both of these in abundance.
The melons are put in trucks and sold
all along the Wasatch front,
but on our recent road trip,
we stopped at Green River itself,
where my Dad cleverly picked out a really terrific
crenshaw melon.
I love crenshaws and they are not easy to find,
especially good ones,
so today's breakfast was a feast!

Perfect Swimming View

Don't you just want to dive right on in??

Monday, August 1, 2011

Slugs and Snails, English Varieties

I think I feel about snails the way some folks feel
about kitties and puppies.
Haven't you ever noticed how extremely cute snails are?
Look at their little eye stems!
And the patterns in their bodies!
And that slime! Isn't it interesting!

Sheep for Emily

These sheep were all grazing near the Uffington White Horse--
a famous hill figure in Oxfordshire.
Emily, I was thinking of you!

Searching for a Snake-Sitter

Who would not want to look after this cuddly creature?
Sadly, many people do not like the idea.
It is mostly due to her dietary requirements.
Since I have changed to feeding her rats
that are defrosted, previously-frozen,
no one in my immediate family
(with the exception of one or two nephews)
is really willing to take on the task.
True, my sister will undertake to do it for a couple of weeks,
but not for a long term trip.
Strange that feeding her live mice was less difficult
for my squeamish relatives.
(But the vet says that frozen food is much safer for her.)
So, instead of focusing on getting a house sitter for this fall,
I am focusing on getting a snake sitter
who will then live in the house.
(And if I can't find one, well, then, my poor brother
will just have to adopt a frozen-rat-eating snake
for a few months...)