Tag Archive | turtle

Saturday, August 11, Appeased

Hard-earned honey (for me and the bees) and ripe tomatoes, summer’s bounty pours indoors.

The bees appear to be appeased. This morning I sat down at the pond with my tea and tried to find pleasure in the buzz again. They drink in the rushes near the chairs in the shade. It’s the first time in a week I’ve been able to relax outside, and even so every fly that landed on my toes made me flinch. As I walked in from the pond a bee buzzed straight at me and nearly flew into my ear, but that appeared to be a simple collision rather than an attack. The sort of thing I would not have even noticed before. I need to regain my confidence and composure with my bees, a little bit at a time. I sneaked a peek into their window, unprotected, and felt very brave. The hive looks as full this morning as it did last Saturday. Perhaps the Peaceable Kingdom is back.

Yum. Fresh tomatoes dressed with mayonnaise, chopped basil, cracked pepper, and Ume plum vinegar. So lovely to pull this out of the yard and serve it to a friend for dinner.

A long-eared owl on the fencepost along the driveway, sunset through haze from western fires.

Peach harvest! Birds conglomerated on the peach tree yesterday so I knew it was time. All the soft peaches had already fallen prey, so as with the apricots I picked every perfect fruit left, and left the rest. Every few hours another one is soft enough to eat.

Accidental Harvest. At dusk last night I went to move water and realized I hadn’t thinned carrots in awhile. Kaleidoscope Mix. Some are almost full size, and there are plenty still growing.

All washed in the colander, carrots looking for a recipe.

The temporary turtle left today on her first leg of a multi-stage journey to the Colorado Reptile Humane Society in Longmont. Thanks, Emily, for taking her to Colorado Springs, where she’ll hitch a ride with a CoRHS board member up to Boulder, and catch another ride on to the facility. There, she’ll be in a big outdoor pen with some other box turtles, and be able to burrow underground and hibernate for the winter, which she couldn’t do here. Apparently it’s against the law to release a once-captive reptile back into the wild; she could transmit a pathogen that could harm her wild kin. CoRHS has stringent requirements for people wanting to adopt, so if she does find another home it should be a good one. Kind of hard to say goodbye, but she’s going into good hands.

Thursday, July 12, 7:12 p.m.

A beautiful snake skin! A perfect shed, in the bottom of the dogpen fence.

A little wild bee on the Scabiosa.

Zauschneria arizonica, purple echinacea, yellow potentilla, purple scabiosa, all bloom in the butterfly bed, along with last year’s seeming weed, now a charming ground cover, from the drought, or from having simply established its place in the system. Milkweed going to pod after a short, early bloom. Having had good help in the yard this summer, and last, walking through it now is pure pleasure. I can see the beauty, not merely the undone.

The third ripe Violet Jasper falls into my left hand as I reach inside the vine. Deer have eaten most greenery and fruit outside the tomato cage, but inside they’re mine. Its hue is scarlet to burgundy, streaked with green; I read a bad review of this tomato after it was growing. The first one I tried wasn’t ripe, and wasn’t good. The first ripe one I gave to Suzi and she said it was oh so sweet. The second I ate hastily. This small tomato I savor.

It’s birds eating the apricots, and the peaches too. Birds, of all things, eating my fruits. I should not have thinned them, then there would be enough for all of us. A little bird smashed into the window this afternoon. Before I could get out there to check it, Raven snatched it and ran away. Whether the dog or the window killed it, I don’t know. On the upside, the temporary turtle ate a mealworm, and a good-sized nightcrawler today. She spent much of the day burrowed in several different places, and wandered around comfortably later after cloud cover cooled the day.

I harvested the peppermint the ranger gave me, spread it on racks in the pantry to dry for tea.


Tuesday, July 10

Temporary turtle, Mickey, rescued from the road by a friend who knew to call me. An ornate box turtle, native to the midwest including the shortgrass prairies of eastern Colorado, she is a fugitive from someone who no doubt brought her across the mountains. Some day this summer, I’ll return her to her native habitat in a protected place. For now, she inhabits the tortoise round pen, while Biko roams the yard. Tomorrow it’s off to the bait store in Crawford for nightcrawlers and mealworms.