I am feeling a little under the weather. Maybe it's a side effect from the second part of the shingles vaccine that I took yesterday. Or perhaps it's a type of seasonal affective disorder, brought on by the ongoing smoky environment and the shortening days. As I thought about writing a blog post this week, it took some effort to screw up the energy to do it. I decided I would take an easy route, and stroll the back forty for some inspiration. Do you suppose it is just a coincidence that most of the pictures are plants that have gone to seed? Gone to seed: showing signs of advanced wear and tear and neglect. (Merriam Webster)
Despite ongoing spraying, thistles are abundant in our lower prairie. A plant can produce up to 6,000 seeds that can persist in the soil for over 9 years. As the saying goes, it's a marathon, not a sprint. I have taken to cutting off the heads to at least halt the seed production.The Labor Day wind storm brought down a couple of our aged aspen trees, with collateral damage on the younger aspens nearby. A close look at the stump shows that it was becoming hollow; sawdust would suggest that termites were hard at work. In the end, it was no contest for the 40+ mile an hour winds that day. I used to put my trail cam near here, since the deer have worn a path through this grove of aspens. They will have to adjust their route! For now, they have been continuing to frequent the area to eat the aspen leaves that are suddenly within reach.
Shorter days and lower night-time temperatures are wielding Nature's paintbrush, revealing yellows, oranges and reds that have been hidden by abundant chlorophyll.
Not everything in my world of Nature is rolling up the carpets for the winter. I can't tell you how many of these ant hills we have around our property, but I can tell you that they are still very active, as you can see in the video below. I could spend hours watching this activity and trying to make some sense of it. How tall does the hill need to be for it to be done? Are any of the sticks food? If not, who is focusing on the food part of the equation? I have written before about the beaver family that occupies the lake at the bottom of our property. When the beavers moved in, they applied their superior engineering skills and very effectively dammed the creek and raised the water level. While this is a boon for the wetland ecosystem around the lake, it had the undesirable consequence of dramatically reducing water flow to several of our neighbors, some of whom rely on the water for their cattle. The battle of the brains began, man versus rodent. How to restore some water flow without impacting the beaver, and in a way that the beavers would ignore? Initially, every solution the team created was thwarted by the beaver; ditches were filled in overnight, pipes with holes were plugged with mud, strategically placed boards were removed and added to the dam. It was equal parts funny and frustrating. At this point, it seems the latest man-made engineering feat has worked, but only time will tell. On my last visit to the dam, I observed that the beaver has begun constructing a secondary dam, 15 feet below the original dam. It has not stopped the water flowing into the creek, but I am not sure the critters are done yet! Watch this space!
If you look hard enough, you can also find some plants with blooms.
I try to ignore for the moment that the daisies and knapweed are considered invasive here. If I get too focused on them, this walk would turn into a weed-pulling exercise rather than the diversion it is meant to be!
Update: it has been a couple of days since I started this post, and I am glad to report that, physically, I am back to myself. I do think it was the vaccine; no regrets about taking it, but it just reminds me that I do not make a good patient! Mentally, I am still working on my attitude. The forecasted rain for last night and today has not materialized; the skies are gray and the smoke lingers. Logically, I know I should count my blessings and find myself a rich woman. Thinking that music often helps bring me around, I went looking for "autumn" songs, and came across "September" by Earth, Wind and Fire. I hope this post finds you well, but if you need a little pick-me-up, maybe this will lift your spirits and send your toes tapping!
Welcome to Mosaic Monday, a weekly meme where we get together to share our photo mosaics and collages.
Please include at least one photo mosaic/collage in your post.
The link will be open from 1 p.m. Sunday until 11 p.m. Tuesday (U.S. Mountain time).
Remember to add the link to your Mosaic Monday post and not the one to your blog.
Please link back to this post so that your readers will be able to visit and enjoy more wonderful mosaics; taking the MM blog button from my sidebar is an easy way to link back.
As host I will visit every participant and leave a comment so that you know I stopped by.
Please try and visit as many other blogs as you can, especially those that join in later, so that everyone's creativity can be appreciated fully.
Thank you for joining in today and sharing your mosaics with us.
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...Merriam Webster has a limited understanding of going to seed. Without this happening spring would be a disappointment!ReplyDelete
Your garden is full of autumn color as nature displays its inner beauty and seeds can be looked upon as a symbol of new life. Just think, more seeds bring more plants!ReplyDelete
Love the Song September of Earth, Wind & Fire...ReplyDelete
...otherwise, I have to thought about your view in the garden. We get autumn here to, but this season seems new in my feeling like the other years before. One point - of course - is Covid-19 another is the climate change. We will see. And I hope of better times.
LOL. Battling rodents can be a losing proposition! I hope the latest changes stick. Love the fall colors and blooms.ReplyDelete
Beautiful photos and so glad to hear you are feeling better too!ReplyDelete
Glad you're feeling better and hope it continues. I love all the photos from your back forty! But beavers, such a nuisance when it comes to creeks and watering cattle. The past two days it has cooled off and been glorious but I'm not a "cold weather" person so I am hopeful that we have a long Fall and short winter.ReplyDelete
Dawn aka Spatulas On Parade
Oh, I go to seed with just the thought of winter appearing on my horizon! Glad you are feeling perkier today. I am told the shingles vaccine can get you like that. I think daisies as a weed everywhere would be delightful.....but that's just me. I rather love a wild and unruly prairie/meadow/paddock.....of daisies. Ants.....go figure. At least they know what they are doing.ReplyDelete
Thank you for the music! :) I had forgotten about this song. It was very popular in Sweden. And you have this kind of anthills too. I like them as a large anthill means a healthy forest :) I like your autumn mosaics.ReplyDelete
Take care, stay well.
I really do like seeing things around your neck of the woods, such a pretty area. I'm sure glad you are feeling better!ReplyDelete
I hope you feel better soon, Angie! I had the older version of the shingles immunization but not the newer Shingrix as yet. I did hear it makes one feel achy for a few days afterward.ReplyDelete
We have a large long wooden retaining wall at the back of our property, as we are at the bottom of a hill, and we had to have it sprayed 3 times this summer by an exterminator as we had hives of big black carpenter ants nesting in it. They killed quite a few of our aspen trees and actually were attacking a deck we have off our bedroom. They can be as destructive as termites. We had to have our deck rebuilt this summer and opted for trex composite and steel support instead of wood. They are a part of nature but we couldn't allow them to destroy our home besides our trees. We hope to take a drive this week to a higher elevation to see some color change--hope our early September frost and snow not prevent the trees from changing color! This has been one heck of a year!
You are most lucky to have beavers so close by to observe them :) and your pictures capture Autumn beautifully.ReplyDelete
Angie, I’m glad you are feeling better, because I simply cannot allow anyone so much younger than I am to think about “going to seed.” (I reserve that for myself...on bad days.). Seriously, thank you for the reminder that we *must* get that shingles vaccine this year along with our flu one. .... your flowers (even the ones that are spent for the year) are all lovely in their own way and your yard a perfect place for a cheer-up walk. That Oregon grape plant looks right at home up there by the way! ... thanks for sharing especially at a time when you’re a bit under the weather. (Which by the way, in spite of my first sentence, you are perfectly entitled to be at any age! )ReplyDelete
Interesting post and I am glad you are feeling much better. Not only the shot but I think the smoky skies--at least for me---have gotten you down. We did get a bit of rain last night and the air is much cleaner now, Blue skies today and stars are out tonight.---YAY!ReplyDelete
We have a beaver Family down in the creek at the back of our property. We worked with the beavers over and over again ---what happened with their damming the creek is that they diverted their runoff into our back pasture---no good, They have moved on now, hopefully
Hope you feel better soon. Going to seed is part of the process for continuationReplyDelete
Hello Angie, I am glad to hear your update and you are feeling better. I am asking my doctor about the shingles shot this week, I hope all goes well. The ant hill video is interesting. The beavers are always so busy, we have seen them in our lake. The fall colors are lovely and I love the flower mosaic. Take care and thanks for hosting MM. Enjoy your day, have a happy new week!ReplyDelete
I'm glad you are feeling better. I have seasonal allergies...thanks to the things going to seed here and it is a nuisance to feel bad or have a headache. I don't make a good patient either and try to deny things and keep going. Love to see the flowers in bloom there and you do great with ids too! Have a good week my friend!ReplyDelete
Hope you're feeling better soon, Angie. We've very flat here and no wonder given the severe lockdown restrictions we're experiencing for many weeks now. Still, it's better than the alternative!ReplyDelete
PS: Thank you for hosting, Angie.ReplyDelete
I felt terrible after my shingles vaccine. But allergies and smoke are affecting me right now too. Get well soon.ReplyDelete
So glad to read you are back to your normal self! Those winds were something. I had a lot of branch clean up and now we have a huge burn pile ready for the right weather. I do hope your skies clear. Ours did yesterday and we are basking in the relief. I had the first shingles shot and now they are advising to take the updated one...oye! Happy Fall to you!ReplyDelete
Angie, That is a big ant hill! The golden yellows are welcomed. Thanks for sharing and hosting. Have a great week. Sylvia D.ReplyDelete
yikes! That is a ferocious wind. I let some of the wildflowers go to seed so I don't have to do the work next year. I do them in flower beds though. Beautiful autumn colours. I hope you feel better soon to enjoy the outdoors.ReplyDelete
Glad you are feeling better. Sorry that the smoke lingers. Have a good week.ReplyDelete
Interesting posting, bad with the fires and this smoke. It's good that you're feeling better again. Beautiful your flower mosaic in autumn colors. The music is great! have a nice week and take good care of yourself, greetings to ElkeReplyDelete
Dear Angie, like you I have been a little under the weather lately, is it seasonal, is it Covid or something else more serious. This is how my mind wanders in the wee small hours when sleep evades me. The next day I'm up and about counting my blessings of which there are many and when the sun shines it banishes those night thoughts completely. I was so pleased to read your postscript and to learn that you are feeling better, take care dear lady.ReplyDelete
I'm glad you are on the uptake. I'm feeling down.ReplyDelete
I think some discomfort from the vaccine is better than shingles. My daughter had it.
Glad the blues were short-lived. With all that’s going on in the world it sometimes seems that our minds have gone to seed like the blooms. The determination of the ants should be inspiring, though, if not a little frightening. :))ReplyDelete
So pleased that you are feeling a little better.ReplyDelete
I enjoyed your Autumn mosaics and great music choice.
All the best Jan
I'm glad to read that you are feeling better, Angie. Autumn is coming quickly in your neck of the woods. Those beavers are full of ingenious ideas!ReplyDelete
Thank you, Angie, for trying to keep Mosaic Monday even when you don’t feel well. Nice to know you feel better. Season seems to have progressed much faster than my little corner of the world. My body can’t adapt itself easily to the rapid change of the weather but much better than the lethargic feel of summer. You must have heard of notoriously muggy summer weather of Japan. Natural disasters worldwide which have gotten much more dangerous is my main concern. COVID-19 is a worry, but we’d be able to manage with utmost care and cooperation. I hope from the bottom of my heart that future people will have good harvest what we’ve sown. Autumn is my favorite season. It’s not only close to the end but also the beginning by association of harvest or seeding respectively. Your mosaics are so lovely, as always. Take care of yourself.ReplyDelete
I hope you feel better, Angie, and enjoy these first days of autumn. They are my favorite and go by so quickly.ReplyDelete
Nice to see the autumn colours coming in. Hope you feel energized soon.ReplyDelete
I am sorry for the feeling bad, hope you get better soon. The autumn colours always makes me tingle inside. I love the ant hill, beautiful display. Thanks Angie.ReplyDelete
Greetings from Greece. Your tale of the beavers made laugh. I guess you know that there are secret places in Britain where beavers are being tested ready for reintroduction. I hope the " experts" know what they are doing because sure as hell Britain ain't the place it used to be. Good that you're feeling better after your jab. Must admit I've avoided that one but going for a flu one soon as we're home.ReplyDelete
Yep ~ all of the above ~ hope you are feeling better ~ Tis the seasonal change I think that affects us all ~ neat nature photos ~ ^_^ReplyDelete
Live with love each moment,
A ShutterBug Explores,
aka (A Creative Harbor)
Glad you are better. I was hoping you would get the rain too. We have rain today so I hope its up north too. My flowers are all still growing especially since it is much cooler. A second life for them. You take care and have a great weekend. KitReplyDelete
Them beavers are persistent, you have to give them that. I am glad you got the shingles vaccine. I need to do so. And the flu vaccine, and pneumonia and I am watching the Covid-19 vaccines progress. Don't quite know what to make of that.ReplyDelete
Glad you are back feeling better. We have a friend that got shingles so we got the vaccine as son as we could. The newer two dose version took longer to get. We had to be on a waiting list for about six months. I had chicken pox twice so I thought I might be more susceptible to shingles in the future. Our smoke cleared last Sunday when the rain arrived. We chose to spend the week in town at our condo where we have an air purifier and it is easier to keep smoke out of the living areas. It felt like being back in quarantine again. - MargyReplyDelete
It great that you are feeling better. I don't think I could handle all the smoke from the fires. Good that you got the shingle vaccine because shingles is not fun. I got it about five years ago and it was very bad. Those beavers are pesty little workers so hopefully you can work out a system that works for all. Have a good weekend, take care and stay safe.ReplyDelete