Kicking Leaves Again


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The trees are bare
Yet no trace of a season remains
Raked and bagged, it is no more

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Except in my little plot of this earth
Where the leaves still swirl
Lifted by the November gales

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The energy spend of a summer season
Will remain, food for the life in the soil

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It will again
Be the the green of our next growing season

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For now I will be out kicking leaves
Until the snows of winter
Blankets the fall and prepares for a coming spring

Curious Friday: A Matter of Design


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Look around
Life made of small patterns
Small designs
Woven into the fabric
Of a world we see everyday
Easy to miss
One has to look close
Take the time
Yet when you see it
All the small patterns
All the small designs
The whole looks different
And maybe a better place

The picture above is of a fungus called Splash Cups or Bird Nest fungus – Crucibulum laevehe The fungus lives on decaying wood and the bird’s nest is the reproductive part. The little eggs inside are called peridoles that look like seeds but contain spores inside. The peridoles open and little drops of water splash into the cup spread the spores to surrounding areas.
They are usually only about a 1/4 inch in size.

Curious Friday: The Wonder of a Flower is to What it Becomes


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The beauty of a flower, beyond our admiration, is its’ purpose to attract a pollinator with real or fault rewards, to move the pollen to ovaries of another plant
Whether the flower be simple or intricate.
Each plant species creating its’ own unique flower and seed

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The wonder of a flower is that transformation from a flower to a seed
Each beautiful, yet so different in design

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It is wonder how it all came about

The flower and seeds of a milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)

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Curious Friday: Apple Cedar Rust


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There are a group of fungi that are referred to as rust and they require alternate hosts in order to survive. Pictures are of Apple cedar rust Gymnosporangium juniperivirginianae that is a fungus who’s life cycle is between Juniperus virginiana (upright junipers) and apples and crab apples. The fungus spores come into contact with juniper twigs and awls (needles) and forms a gall on the juniper.(picture 1)

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It usually will develop in the fall and in the spring around 18 months later, when mature, these galls swell considerably and repeatedly produce orange, gelatinous telial horns during rainy spring weather and releases its’ spores (picture 2)

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The spores are carried by the wind onto apple leaves which develop into yellow blotches on the leaves, fruit or twigs during the summer and later in the season it spores are released where it re-infects the juniper and the cycle continues.
It does not kill either of its’ host, but can do harm especially on stressed plants.

Apple Cedar Rust

I know on one hand it is bad, but it does exist, and apples and crab apples are going to grow near junipers in their range and on some levels it is pretty cool, certainly unusual.

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