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Outdoors

Applewood Estate

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More uncomfortably warm weather in the forecast, so I decided to take advantage of a cooler day to visit Applewood Estates in Flint.

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This former home of the Charles Stewart Mott family was donated to the public, and is cared for by many dedicated volunteers.

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Hydrangeas were putting on a lovely show.

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Many wonderful photo ops.  A very pleasant place to spend and afternoon.

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Day Trip

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Last Friday, hot, humid weather promised to keep me cooped up in the house for most of the day, so I decided to seek some relief at Port Huron.

The linear park which runs under the Bluewater Bridge offers a great view of Lake Huron and the St. Claire River, and there is almost always a cooling breeze there.

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It is always a thrill to see the big freighters make their careful way from Lake into the narrow confines of the river.

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I think this guy was hoping for a handout from me, but I didn’t pack a lunch, so he was out of luck!

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The bridge is well named, as the water here really is this blue.  The cooling breeze did not disappoint, and I enjoyed a nice, leisurely walk. Much as I appreciate my air conditioning at home, I would much rather be outside enjoying the sunshine than cooped up indoors.  It was well worth the drive.

 


Flower Pics

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Took advantage of a beautiful day to pay a brief visit to Seven Ponds Nature Center.  Their Butterfly Garden is not yet in full bloom, but I found this beautiful Lilly.

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My own Day Lilies are just coming into their own now.  They are my kind of flower, needing little to no attention from me!

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Plenty of Crown vetch in bloom now.  I see a great deal of it by the roadsides.

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Also came across some Winter Vetch at the Nature Center.  Just getting the hang of a phone app which helps me identify some of these plants!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


More Blooms

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I was able to plant my flowers a little early this year because of an unusually warm May, and they are doing well so far.

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We are in for a few very hot days, so I will be kept busy watering everything.

Having everything in containers keeps weeds at a minimum, but requires much more watering, which I don’t mind.

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At least I have the option of moving them into the shade if the heat begins to get to them.

 


June Blooms

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Now that warmer weather has finally arrived, we are all playing catch-up with our outside chores, and I haven’t spent as much time with my camera as I would like.

I did manage to get a few shots on the morning walk the other day.  Found this Coreopsis growing at the Nature Conservancy. (Had to use a phone app to identify it!)

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Irises are quickly fading, but I managed to find this beautiful bloom.

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Lots of Wild Roses blooming in the Park, and I was happy to catch these with my pocket camera.


Lovely May

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May is definitely one of my favorite months!  The newly sprouting leaves and grass are such a vivid green it almost hurts the eyes on a sunny day.

I came across my first Trillium last week.

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Spent a happy hour or so at my favorite greenhouse on Wednesday.  Picked up a few annuals for my containers, but will need to go back for more.

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I have to choose carefully as I do not have the greenest of thumbs, and my plants must be pretty hardy!

After a stretch of warmer days and a good bit of rain, mowing season is in full swing.  My lawn is divided up between front, side and back, and if I want to avoid having to do them all at once, I have to mow almost every day.  With riding mowers, it is no hardship to me, and gets me out into the sunshine.


New Life

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Winter has finally loosened its grip on us, and Nature seems to be making up for lost time.  I came across a large patch of Bloodroot blooming in the Park on April 27th.

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Daffodils braved the snow, ice and frost to give us our first taste of Spring!

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They are so beautiful and so hardy.  Even the deer leave them alone!

 


April 18

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Quite a few Common Mergansers visiting the Lake, but they are quite camera-shy.

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Finally managed to get a few photos before they all flew away.

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Skunk Cabbage is finally beginning to appear in the woods.  Everything is going to be late this year.

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These Wild Turkeys usually hang out in my ‘Back Forty’, but the other day they decided to visit my neighbor’s chickens!


Visitors

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I spotted this pair of Tundra, or Whistling Swans on the lake in the Park the other day.  They are probably just visiting on their way north, as they do not usually nest this far south.

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There were quite a few Wood Ducks around too and some Common Mergansers, but too far away for photos.

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I wonder if the Robins are considering heading south again, as the weather is still much more like Winter than Spring here! I wonder what they are finding to eat.

A year ago I posted photos of Forsythia in bloom, and Lilacs budding out.  Nothing like that around this year!  It seems Winter just doesn’t want to let go! Freezing rain forecast here for the weekend. 😦


Still Waiting!

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March in Michigan is such a frustrating month!  The weather will smile on us with warm, sunny days, then suddenly turn and dump another load of snow on us, putting us back in the Deep Freeze again.

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Suffering a bad case of Cabin Fever, I took a drive to Port Huron the other day to spend a little time enjoying Lake Michigan.  I had hoped to take a nice walk by the Bluewater Bridge, but the icy wind blowing off the Lake discouraged that.  I did manage to snap a few photos of a duck I did not recognize near the shore.

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My trusty Field Guide identified it as a female Oldsquaw or Long-Tailed Duck. They are not native to Michigan, so must have stopped in on their way North.

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The chilly temperatures help to keep my bird-feeder busy, and I managed some nice shots of this female Cardinal.