Carota Comet

Best carrot yield yet, in terms of carrot shape. There may be just enough time to sow more before frost. In the spirit of Where’s Waldo, find the forked carrot.

The stubby carrots aren't the result of dense soil... they're a cultivar called "Atlas" from Johnny's Seeds. Atlas is described as a "small, round Parisian Market type."

The stubby carrots aren’t the result of dense soil… they’re a cultivar called “Atlas” from Johnny’s Seeds. Atlas is described as a “small, round Parisian Market type.”

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Gourd Gosh

We often say a weed is just a plant growing in the wrong place. There are also the happy accidents, where volunteer plants provide interest – like these long neck ornamental gourds from a mystery squash plant. Of course, it took a little patience to wait to see what fruit would be produced (and if edible or not), and luckily enough space was available for the sprawling vine.

Long neck gourd cluster.

Long neck gourd cluster.

Long neck gourd close-up.

Long neck gourd close-up.

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Another Beautiful Bean Tree

Mimosa, a native of China introduced to the U.S. in 1745, is a legume, just like the Redbud, a member of plant family Fabaceae. Beautiful in the summer, but they crowd out natives. Like all legumes the mimosa tree fixes nitrogen in the soil, but robs other plants of available nutrients. For horticulturists it’s a love/hate thing, mostly the latter.

Yes, saturation & contrast have been pumped up.

Yes, saturation & contrast have been pumped up.


This image has a strange level of detail for two reasons: the wind is blowing (soft focus); the iPhone zoom enlarges pixels.

This image has a strange level of detail for two reasons: the wind is blowing (soft focus); the iPhone zoom enlarges pixels.

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Swarmed by the Sweetest of Bees

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RVA Earth Day Manchester 2014

I think the lead artist for this striking and effective performance art is Lily Lamberta, who along with members of her All The Saints Theater Company made a guerilla march through the Manchester RVA Earth Day 2014 throngs. If I’m wrong, somebody please correct me.

RVA Earth Day 042614

RVA Earth Day 2 042614

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It’s Electric

The variegated Solomon’s Seal is emerging, along with the hostas and, well, just about everything. Finally.

Polygonatum odoratum, commonly called fragrant Solomon's seal. The scientific name sounds like it could be a band member's name in GWAR.

Polygonatum odoratum, commonly called fragrant Solomon’s seal. The scientific name sounds like it could be a band member’s name in GWAR.

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Yummy Cauliflorous Inflorescence

“Cauliflorous”, or “cauliflory” is the term describing the production of flowers on the trunk and branches of woody plants, as opposed to the ends of the twigs. In this case, we’re looking at the ubiquitous eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis) – which happens to be a legume (member of the bean family: Fabaceae). Native Americans consumed redbud flowers raw or boiled, and ate roasted seeds. That’s the green seed pods, not the mature seed pods. The flowers contain anthocyanins. Images abound on the web picturing beautiful salads garnished with redbud blooms, and the blooms visible through the translucent rice wrappers of spring rolls. How appropriate… spring = redbud blooms = spring rolls.

Eastern Redbud Buds 041014

Definitely fluorescent.

Definitely fluorescent.

Eastern Redbud Blooms 041014

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