Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Pileated Woodpecker


 

I see these majestic birds from time to time here.  They are quite agile and fast for a bird their size, darting in and out of the trees, they look like a space ship or some other animated creature!

This Pileated Woodpecker has been a frequent visitor to the many dead trees and stumps around my place this summer.  I finally got a chance to get a few photos of him, but he moves so quickly it is hard to focus on him.


Then he's off again.

I was fortunate enough to get a very brief  (only 14 seconds!) video of him in this area of my yard.  The photos of him on the trees were too blurry as the point and shoot couldn't keep up with his quick moving head and body.

So here's the video:


Enjoy!!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Tree Falling


 It's never easy to make a judgement call on tree removal, at least not for this tree hugger.  But the years were passing and the tree was getting bigger, so I had to decide.  

It's a lovely cedar, not very old, planted about 15 years ago when the first owner cleared the place and put the mobile home in.  However, it's base is only about 8 or 10 feet from the septic tank.  

I had done my research and asked a lot of experts whether it was a threat.  The rule of thumb is, nothing should be planted closer than 30 feet from a septic tank or drain field, period.  

I live in a development with good rules.  I had to apply for an architectural approval to have the tree removed, as well as ask the neighbors if they minded - since it was very close to them.  
I got the appropriate paper work and signage and set the date.

It was an easy process.  Basically it was limbed up, tied to another tree, cut and down she went.  Cut up for firewood, limbs hauled away, all in about an hour.




Just that fast.
There was a lovely scent of cedar through the air for days.


So the view of my place is a little more open from the driveway (this is a wide angle point and shoot by the way), but the important thing is that the threat is removed and a clean slate has been created.

A few days later we surveyed the property lines and everything is marked clearly now.  My next steps are to think about aesthetic looking fence options to divide the properties.  I might also like to install an arbor or trellis as a privacy screen.  Maybe wisteria, or clematis.  So much to think about!!
 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Vintage Bike to Yard Art


We've all seen this done with old bikes, converting them to fabulous yard art.  The trick is in finding one in tact.  Luckily for me, I already had this one.  It was originally blue and white, and actually worked.  I know, some of you are cringing at the thought of disabling a working bike.  But seriously, it wouldn't work where I live, too many hills.

I had it parked for yard art for a couple of years, moving it from time to time.  I never quite got the right place.  But what was really happening was that it needed new color!  
I saw a great photo of a bright yellowish orange bike online, with a front basket full of orange daisies, wow, I thought, stunning!

So I got the only yellow spray paint WalMart had that week and wala - here is my bike to yard art make over.  
Next spring it gets flowers in the basket.