Saturday, December 2, 2023

Barbed Wire

 My photography activity has almost dried up...and I'm not certain why.  However, I want to keep this blog active, so I'm going into my files for this post.  Barbed wire fascinates me, particularly if it is old.  Living in a rural area where wire fences are common, I have some good opportunities to find interesting barbed wire. 

Sunday, October 29, 2023

And just like that, fall fell into winter??

 I think I posted leaves last year, but each October they are simply amazing in color and shape.  Because we had a long, warm early fall, the foliage was able to "bloom."   These are just a few of the varieties and colors I found last week. Since then, we've had 20-degree temperatures at night.  And the higher elevations got their first snow...just a skiff here in the valley. 

Sunday, October 8, 2023

Fall is Creeping In

 I believe I've never expressed a fondness for fall, probably because I like summer so much.  However, nothing can beat the colors and textures of fall.  We haven't had frost yet, which is unusual for this country.  We are experiencing morning fog, however.  Usually it's in the valleys bordering a river; however, this particular day, the only east-west freeway was closed for at least 4 hours because a commercial truck had wrecked in the fog up on the mountain. Down in the valley...a drive in the neighboring Grande Ronde Valley recently indicated the beginning of the autumn season.  A later drive will no doubt produce even more color.  

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

"The Lake"

 As one who grew up in Northeast Oregon's Wallowa County, I knew Wallowa Lake as a familiar place...but not one that my family visited very often.  It was and is a tourist attraction, and as a farm family, we didn't do many "tourist" things, even those relatively close to where we lived.  This lake was formed by a glacier and the east "bank" of the lake is considered nearly perfect moraine.  (I learned that in a geology class at Oregon State University decades ago.)  Natives of Wallowa County refer to it simply as "the lake" when talking about it. Actually, many natives just say "the County," too, as if it were the only one in Oregon.  

Generally, I visit the lake a few times a year, but this year has been different.  Old age, maybe?   Anyway, this past week was a good time to visit because it was a Monday and things were relatively quiet.  My photographs are almost always taken at the foot of the lake, which is the north end.  There's a wide beach when the water isn't high, and there's a boat launch.  I simply walk a few steps with my camera. Most of the summer activity is at the south end of the lake, where there is a park, marina, pack station, go-carts, camping, a historical lodge, cabins, and summer dwellings.  It is also the starting point for hikes into the Eagle Caps or high Wallowa Mountains.  I prefer the quiet end. 

Friday, August 18, 2023

Sunflowers Don't Last Long Enough

 It's been a month since my last blog post; I try to keep the subjects interesting--both to myself and any readers.  This post involves my favorite summertime flower...the sunflower. I grow some of my is more than 10 feet tall...but my favorites are found in the fields where sunflowers are grown as crops.  The Grande Ronde Valley is the site of a large variety of field crops, and the sunflowers are the most colorful (except when bright yellow canola is grown.)

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Summer Yard Vistors

 Town Deer...that's a term many communities are familiar with:  deer that live their entire lives inside city limits.  Most people dread having deer on their property; they are death on many plants, flowers, and veggies.  It's not unusual to see gardens fenced with 6 ft. high fencing.  

As for me, I can usually deter deer damage by spraying a solution called Deer Out.  It's a minty-smelling liquid that deer don't like.  However, it has to be used early in the growing season, before the deer develop a taste for "town food."  During winter, the deer visit our large yard during the night; they don't do any damage.  In spring, they can be destructive.  I grow plants that deer don't particularly care for:  peonies, coneflowers, poppies, black-eyed Susans. Sunflowers need to be watched until they bloom; when tender, the deer love the buds!  Fawns haven't developed an "educated palate" so will munch on about everything green.  

My yard is now in summer bloom...coneflowers and black-eyed Susans with a few sunflowers.  Recently, we had a doe who took a nap outside our kitchen window in the shade of a large old maple tree; a few days later, a doe (maybe the same one) showed up with twin fawns.  It was almost 90 degrees, so the deer bedded down in the shade. One fawn used the downspout for a pillow.  

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Summer Images

 After peony season, it's just a short wait until the summer flowers bloom:  coneflowers, sunflowers, black-eyed Susans.  Fortunately, they don't appeal to the town deer.  (The pretty blue chicory blossom grows in an empty lot across the street.)