Saturday, December 31, 2016


This fall I built a birdhouse for the north-side of the berm. It is close to a duplicate of a successful birdhouse in the backyard where many generations of house sparrows have been raised. I placed it about 7 feet up on top of one of the posts I had planted earlier in the year to protect the young trees from the mower. The long grass mower had run over about 5-10 trees in the early summer but some of them were coming back from the inadvertent coppicing. The posts did the trick of convincing the mower to not follow the path taken in the summer when remowing the area in the fall.

I took the above picture on the 7th and it has stayed cold and snowy all December. In the poplar trees on top of the berm were a bunch of crows making a racket as I was taking this picture. They were a small part of the large flock that heads East each evening back to their roost on the Rideau.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Roadside Test Plots

Someone is conducting an experiment on a patch of ground adjacent to the road in front of the crabapples. Early in the summer (when I took the above photo) they sprayed herbicide to kill all the vegetation and spread clover seeds. Unfortunately for their experiment a heavy rain storm wash their seeds into puddles and what mostly grew up was ragweed except in the patches where the clover germinated. They then in the late summer repeated the experiment further along the road with much more success. It will be interesting to see how the clover handles the salt over winter.

This evening on my walk it felt like winter was coming at last. There was a strong wind out of the west and hundreds of crows were racing east overhead back to their roost on the Rideau.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Caught Cicada

This banded argiope, one of the common orbweavers has got super lucky; it has caught a cicada in its net. The poor cicada was still struggling when I noticed it.

I took this photo in September but the quality is disappointing. My camera bit the dust earlier in the summer and the camera on my phone just isn't up to snuff.

Friday, September 9, 2016


His sisters were busy biting me as this little male mosquito only had eyes for the goldenrod flowers.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Black Locust

Here is the black locust I transplanted last year. It is growing strongly and is now about 4 feet tall.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Trembling Aspen

The purple line is to the right of a young 8 trembling aspen sapling that got its chance here on the north side of the berm when they stopped cutting the grass in 2009. The purple line goes from the ground up to a branch that was at my shoulder level (5ft). The yellow line is as high as the sapling and is over 6 times as long as the purple line indicating the sapling is a little over 30ft tall. The trunk has a circumference of 12 inches. Not bad for 8 years of growth.