Steve and I drove through starved rock state park in the snow storm today (yes, it was too beautiful yesterday to last- we all knew the snow was coming back!) anyway, finally got a few shots of a bald eagle in flight. Not the best shots- still kind of shaky with the long lenses- but I finally got pictures that you can actually see that it is an eagle! (Here was my first attempt at an eagle a few years back)
Here is it January of 2015 already. Where did the year go?
Actually I’m glad to see last year go. It started out okay but ended pretty lousy. I was hollering for a do over towards the end there, but now I’ll just opt for a fresh start.
Now here we are, a fresh snow and good ole bitter cold to go with it. For a little while there I thought Mother Nature was going to take it easy on us this winter. I was enjoying the temps in 40’s, especially over Christmas- but alas, we do live in Illinois!
|Morning after last night’s storm- about 6 inches of powder snow|
|seeing double- pair of chickadees|
|a Cold Mourning Dove|
|Black Capped Chickadees|
Here’s another basket I put together every year for the Humming birds. This is for Partial shade.
I use three trailing Torenia (wishbone flower) and three pink Calibrachoa (million bells) in a 12 inch hanging basket.
The Torenia is deer resistant but the Calibrachoa isn’t. This basket is hanging by the back door where the dogs go in and out, so unless the deer get really bold, they should leave it a lone. It’s also in front of the window so we can see the hummingbirds visit it.
I mix my own soil, 1 part organic peat, 1 part organic compost or mushroom compost, 1/2 part untreated vermiculite or perlite (no added fertilizers), and about 2 tablespoons per gallon of soil of dry organic, low nitrogen fertilizer.
I grow a lot of plants so I usually mix up a wheelbarrow full at a time- so I add about 2 cups of the fertilizer per wheelbarrow- it’s never an exact science with me- then I mix it all together with a shovel.
This is a very easy care basket for part shade areas. Make sure your basket has a drain hole and just water when soil starts to feel dry or the basket feels light (don’t let it get bone dry though). You can also get in the habit of touching the soil every time you pass by.