Jack’s Walk

False Solomon’s Seal, ©voyager, all rights reserved

The day started out rainy, but by noon the sun was shining in an azure blue sky and the day was warm and inviting. Jack and I took ourselves off to the woods and we had a lovely, slow stroll whilst chatting about this and that and listening to the birds sing. We marveled at how quickly things change at this time of year. The white trilliums are still blooming, but the red ones have vanished and so have the happy white flowers of bloodroot. Other things are growing madly. The mayapples have become umbrellas and they’re full of buds. The false Solomon’s Seal is in bud, too, and leaves of many kinds are sprouting up along the entire forest floor. Jack took extra care to sprinkle pee where it was needed the most and by the time we’d gone all the way around his tank was empty and he was doing the air-pee. All in all a brilliant day.

Jack’s Walk

The Canopy Cometh ©voyager, all rights reserved

The canopy of the forest is filling in quickly and soon all the light that’s been fueling the growth of spring flowers will turn to shade or bits of dappled sunlight. The trilliums are still blooming madly, though, and we even found a few red trilliums still hanging on. The Jack-in-the-pulpits have sprouted up all over and I can’t recall a year that there have been so many of them. They’re everywhere and some of them are huge. It seemed to take forever for spring to arrive this year, but the woodland flowers are obviously very happy with the conditions.

Open for Business. ©voyager, all rights reserved

A red trillium is a rare sight once the white trilliums bloom. ©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack-in-the-pulpits ©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

Yellow Magnolia, ©voyager, all rights reserved

I’m in the midst of a crash right now so Jack and I didn’t go far this morning, just far enough for Mr. Schnoop to poop. I did find a couple of things worth sharing, though. First, is my neighbours yellow magnolia. It’s still small, but it sure seems happy.

Big yellow blooms, © voyager, all rights reserved

Next, are the daffodils in another neighbours garden. They were peaking today.

A few happy daffies in my neighbour’s garden, voyager, all rights reserved

I apologize for not getting Jack’s Walk up yesterday. Let’s just say it was a bad day. Today the pain is better, but my brain is kinda fucked up and the double gravity won’t lift. Also, my hands won’t do what I want them to.

We had a good trip and I’ll try to get a post up later today.



Jack’s Walk

White Trillium with a virus-like mycoplasma infection causing green stripes. Eventually (it takes a long time) the flower will turn all green and ultimately stop blooming. ©voyager, all rights reserved

I should be on my way home from Michigan today and then live again tomorrow. I didn’t want to leave you without spring flowers, though, so here are a few shots I took in our wee forest on Sunday.

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Tree Tuesday

One of our readers has recently moved back to Canada from Mexico and they’re missing the blooming of their favourite tree, the Royal Poinciana also known as the Flamboyant Tree. It’s easy to see why the these trees would be missed. Many people consider the Royal Poinciana to be the most beautiful flowering tree in the world. Native to Madagascar the trees were introduced to Mexico in the 19th century and quickly came to be loved.

In Yucatan, these beautiful flowering trees became favorite ornamental trees to grow near Mayan huts, villages, urban avenues and parks.  Its orchid shaped deep orange-red flowers are truly exquisite, one petal is different from the rest with light tone and deep shades of orange magenta spot; flowers grow in clusters, blooms in May and summer the Flamboyan trees are fully covered with flowers without their pinnae leaflets (foliage). Flamboyan seeds grow in large “machete like” hard pods.

Mexico is only one of many warm climates where the Flamboyant tree has prospered. According to Wikimedia the Royal Poinciana is now successfully cultivated worldwide in tropical and sub-tropical regions.

The blooming of the royal poinciana is certainly an event to be celebrated as its flowers are large, bright and plentiful.

The flowers of the royal poinciana are large and normally a shade of yellow, orange, or bright red. Each flower has four spreading petals that measure up to 3 inches (about 8 cm) in length and a fifth petal called the standard that is upright and a little bigger than the other petals. The standard is distinctive because of its white and yellow spots. Another common name of the royal poinciana is peacock flower because the physical appearance of the flowers is similar to that of a peacock with its feathers up.

Because of its size and wide umbrella shape the royal poinciana is an excellent shade tree and is beloved wherever it grows. There is also research being done that shows the plant has much more to offer than just beauty and shade. Studies have found anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties along with an ability to increase wound healing and aid in glucose tolerance in diabetic mice. If you’re interested, the article linked below at the Liliana Usvat blog also offers information on the propagation of the tree and the current research studies being done on the plant.

via – Liliana Usvat – Reforestation and Medicinal use of the trees

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

I took Jack to the woods yesterday and we were greeted by masses of brilliant white trilliums covering the forest floor. It’s an incredible sight and so short-lived that I count myself very lucky to have found them at their peak. It was tempting to wander into the forest to take photos, but I stuck to the path so as not to trample any of the other tender young plants. There are Jack-in-the-pulpits popping up all over the place (just look at the area in front of Jack’s back feet) and everywhere you look there are tender, young shoots of false Solomon’s Seal unfurling and trout lilies blooming and beautiful green life coming back to the forest. I tried to take this photo without Jack. We stood here for several minutes and every time I aimed my camera at the trilliums Jack walked into the shot. He was careful not to trample the flowers, but he was determined to be in the picture. I could have put him on leash, but that didn’t feel right so here are 7 brilliant white trilliums and 1 brilliant brown dog.

Jack’s Walk

A trio of beauties, ©voyager, all rights reserved

Pink! ©voyager, all rights reserved

It is a dreary, rainy day here and tomorrow is scheduled to be the same. Overall, this has been a much wetter spring than we’re used to and at this point I think the growing things would rather have sunshine. I would, too. Jack and I did manage to get to the park before the heavy rain started and we saw our first goslings of the year, but mamas and papas were closely on guard so we kept our distance. It wasn’t all doom and gloom, though. We did find these beautiful trees in blossom and they lit up my day. I’m not sure what they are. They look like cherry blossoms, but I couldn’t find anything to identify them. They were planted a few years ago and this is the first time I’ve seen flowers. To be honest, I’ve mostly ignored them until now. The light in the photos is grim, but I haven’t got the energy to play around and try to fix it. Even in bad light, though, they’re beautiful. I like the way the willows in the background accent the pink. I suppose this is what the parks department had in mind when they were planted and they just needed time to grow up a bit.

Jack’s Walk

Can you find Jack? ©voyager, all rights reserved

For you, rq. ©voyager, all rights reserved

The trout lilies are open! Everywhere you look the forest floor is speckled with their bright and cheerful yellow flowers. I’m sorry to report, though, that the white trilliums are still not open. There are lots of them around, but I couldn’t find a single one with an open bloom. Just out of curiosity I looked back to last year’s spring photos and on May 7 (a year ago today) I shot quite a few open white trilliums. I hope that means that this year’s flowers will present themselves soon.

Flowers and Aliens

First, remember the not black tulips? Seems like the package contained two varieties, with the pink ones being earlier and the almost black ones being later. Here they finally are:

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Next one is true kingcups that grow along our little creek. I wanted to get closer but then chose dry feet…

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Dungbeetles are no aliens, Sorry to disappoint you. But I quite like them.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

This, OTOH, is aliens. I guess at some point they are replaced every year by ordinary fern plants, but this is  not something that just grows, it’s the result of extraterrestrial mingling.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s been an absolutely glorious day here, full of sunshine and flowers and bees. The tulips around our neighbourhood are opening up in a riot of colour and down the street hyacinths are in full deep purple bloom. We’ve had a day and a half of sunshine and it seems that’s exactly what was needed to kick spring into gear. Yesterday morning the trees were only just a bit fuzzy, but this afternoon there are actual leaves popping out all over. It isn’t quite leaf day yet, but I think it might be tomorrow. Everything is growing so quickly. Overnight my hydrangeas sprouted leaves and I swear my grass has put on 2 or 3 inches of growth since yesterday morning. It’s like someone waved a magic wand and said ‘go, hurry.’ So imagine my surprise to arrive at the park this afternoon and find all of the tulips there still tightly closed.  Oh well, it obviously isn’t their day yet.

It’s my day! ©voyager, all rights reserved