Monday, September 29, 2014

Art Tour- Cynthia Gatien

 We went to a few studios that were part of an art tour in our area.  On our way in to Cynthia Gatien's studio in Lancaster, I was struck by the blue shoes that this couple were wearing.  She had on bright blue spikes with matching purse, and he had on royal blue suede loafers. Overall the outfits are casual but pleasingly co-ordinated.  Was that planned, or did it just happen?
Anyway, on to some of Cynthia's great paintings.

 I hadn't been to her studio for a few years.  Then, she was painting rich interiors full of colour and designs.  This year, as well as some beautiful florals, she had some whimsical paintings that were just fun to look at.  This was titled "Wait your turn."

 "Leap of Faith".

 "Stop Worrying".

I just had to laugh at this zebra having a good roll.  The poem at the bottom reads:
As he contemplated the unseen,
The zebra was at home in his dream.
Cut from the now 'n tied to the sky
He felt all the reasons he knew he could fly.

 Great poem.  Not too sure what the American flag and bunny have to do with it...  There is a plane in the sky with zebra wings.

 I really like her floral paintings.

And this gorgeous one came home with us!  I will always enjoy it.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Happy Autumn

 I was feeling a bit sad that summer was over, but how can you be sad when a silly nasturtium is dressed up like a jester?

 The colours are muted so far except for some of the reds.

Like apple peels.

 Plum, hunter green and maize.

 Some wild grapes. They are quite prolific this year.  Although they are edible, the taste is a bit harsh and the seeds take up most of the fruit so I leave them to the wildlife.


 Surprise!  The hardy cyclamen, looking like a spring flower, has just started blooming.


Sunday, September 21, 2014

P is for Pink

 And pals who perceive and protect,

 And patience that promises,

 And pleasant possibilities,

 And purpose in particular employment and places,

And partings that are not permanent,

And peaceful productivity.
P is for potential.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Mr. Chippy

 The chipmunks are curious and not very nervous.

 This one has empty cheeks, but he's near a hickory tree so I'm sure he'll find some nuts nearby.

Pretty well camouflaged against the brush.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

September Sights

 My husband trimmed this branch, and I thought I would take a picture of the robin's nest.

 Anyway, you know how it is.  One picture leads to another...

 We have so many squirrels - red, black, mutant beige-running around our bush, and lots of chipmunks scurrying around on the ground.  We have several hickory trees and the little animals are busily harvesting, storing, and snacking.

 Mirror image (almost). Lots of bumblebees out there today even though it is chilly.  They were very sleepy on the sedum, but more active on the asters. Strange.

 Evening primrose.

Late  blooming phlox.  Not very full, but still pretty. Next year it will be bigger.

 The weird and wonderful toad lily.

 Fruit of the false Solomon seal.

And the fruit of the real Solomon seal.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Wood Frog and Saddleback Caterpillar

 Last week we had some dead and dying trees cut in our bush.  While we were tidying up some branches afterwards, we spotted this very handsome frog. " Wow! Some rare frog?" I thought.  Apparently not.  The wood frog, which is what he is, is the most widespread frog in all of Canada.  He even lives above the Arctic circle.  They like to live in the forest and hide under logs and leaves.

 Here he is looking at us.  "What?  You never noticed me before?" (The pictures blurry but I like his expression.)

We also found this crazy little caterpillar, which is only about 1 cm long, and called a saddleback caterpillar.  This picture is also blurry and the colour is pale compared with real life.  For some really good pics, check out wikipedia.  These are amazing little guys! When I showed the pics to my son, he said nonchalantly that he had seen them before.  And I never knew about it? They turn into plain brown moths. The caterpillars, like many spiky caterpillars, can give you a nasty sting so it's best to enjoy them at a distance.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Cleome (Spider Flower)

 Cleome likes a hot, full sun location. 

In a mass planting such as this, they are really attractive.

Apparently, Cleome is a C4 photosynthesizer which means that they are able to fix more carbon than the majority of plants which are C3 photosynthesizers.  Most of the C4 plants are coincidentally drought resistant as well.   They include sedges, daisies and asters, brassicas and spurges.  And yes, the bees like cleome, too.
 In the right location, it is an easy plant to grow and will even self-sow.  Cleome isn't often for sale in flats because it doesn't bloom until later in the summer, but it will grow just fine planted directly in the garden in the spring.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Wild and Almost Wild

 Rudbeckias and coneflower.

Jewelweed is a vigorous native self-seeder that grows up to 4' high in a moist location.  Can be a nuisance but then again it isn't poisonous, doesn't have prickles and doesn't make burrs. Plus the bumblebees like it.  Some people say that the juice of jewelweed will ease the itch of poison ivy.  Never worked for me, but I'm just a sample of one.

 The jewelweed flowers are quite interesting when you see them up close.

Ligularia also likes a damp location.  It's a rough looking plant but I'll take any blooms I can get at this time of year.

Not sure what this native is but it stays in a clump  and blooms well at this time of year.  The white fluffy flowers brightens up a shady spot nicely.