Ends and Starts

  • Post published:06/24/2010
  • Post comments:6 Comments

Ryan left for home with his father last night – but not before a final flurry of activity. He helped me move the chicks out of the brooding box and into a larger space. The henhouse has two sections, one for the laying hens, and the equally large ‘entry’ which we arrange so the chicks only have 2/3 of the space. It is so dark in the this area, with the brooding box still in place, that I couldn’t get a photo of the happy chicks – who are now beginning to fly. Ryan is holding a Barred Rock, but the Black Stars are very adventurous birds.

Pitcher plants

Ryan and I went searching for adventure and visited the Rowe bog where carniverous pitcher plants grow right next to the road.  I tried to identify this variety, and there are over 100, but have been unsuccessful so far. Any help you can give is welcome.  I never visited the bog when the flowers were in their glory, never realized they were so pretty, even if they are looking away from the road. The bulbous structure at the bottom is the carniverous part and is unlike photos I have found of other pitcher plants.  More research is required.

Ryan at Birch Glen Stables

The final adventure for Ryan this trip was a riding lesson at Birch Glen Stables. This wonderful place is ‘right around the corner’ from us and Joan Schoenhals is a patient and encouraging instructor. Riders begin at the beginning – with grooming the horse, and learning about the ‘tack’ which is to say the saddle and bridle and everything. Joan is attentive, and Ryan certainly is concentrating. We thought he had a good feel for handling the horse – and after only about 45 minutes actually on the horse!  This summer Ryan is the first grandson to visit, so he is the first one to have a lesson, but soon the other boys will arrive and we’ll see if they enjoy riding, too.

Thomas Affleck

Now that Ryan’s visit has ended, we start the final push before the Annual Rose Viewing. Last summer I planted Thomas Affleck at the end of the Herb Garden in front of the house because the description of the Antique Rose Emporium said they were fragrant and should be planted where that fragrance could be enjoyed often. The rose has done well and I didn’t even realize how many flowers and buds were on the bush until I cleared out the bolted spinach that I planted in front of it – knowing that the spinach would be out before the Rose Viewing. It looks great, but it isn’t fragrant. At least not this year – or so far. I find that the intensity of the fragrance for any rose varies from year to year.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Mattenylou

    I’d love to find a pitcher plant, we only have tiny sundews here, hope to come across one some day.

    Your rose photos have been wonderful, I’ve enjoyed them this month, thanks for posting.

  2. Cara Hochhalter

    Hi Pat….I found your pitcher plant in my Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Wildflowers…#423. It looks like a Northern Pitcher Plant. Such an amazing plant…it describes the process where the insects fall into the water collected in the bulbous plant being attracted to its colored lip. Then it has difficulty crawling up because the hairs on the plant are “recurved”. The insect falls back into the liquid and drowns. (Lovely) It says, “Enzymes secreted by the plant aid in the digestion of the insect but much of the breakdown is passive, a result of bacterial activity. The plant absorbs the nutrients, especially nitrogenous compounds.” Amazing, amazing!

  3. Pat

    Mattenylou – We have sundews down by our pond – but the pitcher plants are much more dramatic looking. I’m glad you are enjoying the rose pix. I’ll have to update the Virtual Rose Viewing soon.
    Cara – You have a better book than I do! Thank you so much for sending all this good information.

  4. It sounds like a lovely visit. I’ve never grown Thomas Affleck, but isn’t that frustrating when a rose isn’t fragrant? ‘Valentine’ is another one which is similar in color and very, very fragrant. Maybe you could tuck it in?

    I can just imagine your chickens being excited about their new space. Only month ago mine were too.~~Dee

  5. Pat

    Dee – I am HOPING the fragrance will develop, otherwise you’ve made a good suggestion. Thanks.

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