Ice Persists

  • Post published:01/20/2011
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Icing on the Lawn Beds. Iced lilacs. The long road to home. It's a long time til spring.

Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree

  • Post published:12/24/2010
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The need to find symbols for eternal mysteries lies deep in the human family. At this time of the year the landscape is bare and frozen. All the life of nature seems to be frozen and dead. Gone is the verdant green, brilliantly colored flowers, rushing waters. The days grow ever shorter; even the sun seems to be failing. Ever since the beginning of time humans have faced the terror of this seeming death and looked for hope.…

Choosing Our Christmas Tree

  • Post published:12/20/2010
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Henry and I set out Saturday morning to cut our Christmas tree. Unfortunately, this photo does not capture the field of diamonds that surround our house, but it does capture our cat Holly who likes to hike with us. This time we had to stop and put her back in the house. We saw lots of animal tracks as we walked down the Rose Walk. I thought these were deer tracks, but Henry wasn't so sure. A fair amount of…

Celebratory Butterflies

  • Post published:11/09/2010
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This past weekend we were invited to a celebratory 60th birthday party at our local Butterfly House. We thought it was an apt site for the party because while most of us are familiar with the 12 animal Chinese zodiac, the reality is that the complete Chinese zodiac requires going around the 12 year cycle five times - when you begin again. The 60th year can be challenging, but it can also be a time of new beginnings.…

The Larch

  • Post published:11/05/2010
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The larch tree (Larix) is unusual because it is a deciduous conifer. It has needles that turn golden in the fall and then fall off. It also has little cones. In the spring the larch greens up with soft green needles on graceful branches. The photo above shows my friend's larch and a pine growing in friendly proximity. Early this spring I got a call from the brother of a friend who said he found a larch seedling…

Three Shades of Autumn

  • Post published:11/04/2010
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The brilliant colors of fall have blown away, but there is still a richness to the autumnal woodlands that I drive through every day. The sun was warm and low in the sky when I took these photos yesterday, but I know that warmth is ebbing. The day began with the lowest temperatures, 26 degrees,  so far this season. And yet, even though the cosmos and salvias finally gave up the ghost, there is still a bit of…

A Search for Shade

  • Post published:07/10/2010
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Gardens can change overnight, as many people learned after the great May storm that took down so many large trees.  Those who had treasured their trees for the serene shade they provided, and the cooling they often brought to the house, found themselves in a new situation that could not soon be remedied. Marty and Jan McGuane’s cool shady garden became a hot sunny garden  less dramatically, but with the same result. “We had a beautiful and very…