Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Fall Walk around the Cotton Field

I got my flu shot yesterday and my arm hurt this morning, so I skipped my morning swim in the pool.  Instead, this afternoon, I walked around the cotton field.  It's about a mile and a half, but takes some detours and dodging to make it all the way around.  
The cotton is ready for harvest, with the bolls splitting open to reveal the soft cotton inside.  Although machinery goes all around the field, weeds had grown pretty high in some places.  Cutting through the field isn't an option - cotton has thorns!
So I detoured through the volunteer corn field, where new corn plants have come up in the residue of the corn harvest.
Both corn and cotton harvests leave so much waste that it's hard to imagine how they harvest anything at all.
The path between the goldenrod weeds and the cotton field is quite overgrown with weeds, so I kept a careful eye out for snakes (hoping to see one in the distance) but I never saw any sign of a snake.
Some of the weeds look like little Sputniks with little balls with spikes that jump off the bush onto your clothes if you get too close.
Some have pods that look like Japanese beans - when dry, they pop open and spread seeds far and wide.
Some are just covered with seeds waiting to hitch a ride on anything that passes by.
Along one side of the cotton field, wild pig tracks riddled the area.
Lots of hoof tracks - deer?  pigs?
Second half of the walk is along the road, where all the pretty domestic flowers are so pretty.
Confederate Rose
Canna Lilies
and many more.  Lovely day for a walk - breezy and warm, with lots of sun, but not too hot.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

A Day at the Beach

Our kids from Salt Lake City came to Florida this past week and spent several days in Orlando before they headed our way.  When they got here, Gavin was still wearing his saber tooth tiger face.
We headed out in the boat to check out Stump Pass State Park.
Gavin sat next to Captain Ron to help with the steering.
Ron sped up when we got out into Lemon Bay

We got to the Manasota Key bridge just in time to see it open for a big sailboat.
Not too many people at the beach, so we looked for shark teeth and swam for a long time.
The tide was coming in so we did some body surfing.
The water was a perfect temperature - about 84 degrees.
Heading back
With Cam at the wheel.
Another beautiful Florida day!

Monday, October 14, 2013

First Florida Motorcycle Ride of the Season

Fran got a beautiful new bike 
Ron checking out all the bells and whistles
Howie and Ruthanne joined us for the ride to Wauchulla
Lovely ride with occasional breaks from the sun when a cloud gave us a bit of shade
We stopped for a final rest at the tiki bar on Charlotte Harbor in Punta Gorda
Got home in time for a swim in the pool.  Definitely a "happy" day.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Before and After Shots of our Georgia Yards

Did I mention we have way too many flower beds?  This isn't even all of them.  Ron has all the lots mowed but it will be at least another mowing before they look like a golf course again.  It's a start and we're feeling a lot better about things after five intense days of yard work!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Our Work is Cut Out for Us

As usual, a return to Georgia means lots of yard work.  We have great neighbors who mow the lawns, but we realize every year when we return that we have WAY TOO MANY flower beds and way too little appreciation of the southern vines and their ambition.
The fig tree totally collapsed this year from either the weight of figs or the weight of vines using it as a trellis.  Yesterday and today in the morning when it was relatively cool, we worked on clearing this out.
We finally realized this flower bed can be shortened by about half.  So we cleared out all the weeds, trees, and debris and planted the front half into lawn.  I didn't move the bird bath or flower pot, so you can see how much we eliminated.  It should be a lot easier to mow now also.
This flower bed between our houses is the next project - but it has to wait until tomorrow - too hot, too tired and too many gnats to work any more on it today.  I did get about four feet of it done before I had to give up.

Mom's flower beds are next - I think I even noticed some good flowers in this mess of trees. 
Meanwhile, Ron has the Kubota out and is mowing the road and the other lots.  They had weeds about 6' high throughout, but he's making some progress every day.