Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Leap Day

Earlier today I planted more carrots and three kinds of choi; mei qing, joi and win-win.  Don’t those names just make you think you’ll have good fortune if you eat them?  I also planted spinach, a new variety called Bordeaux, it’s supposed to have purple- red stems and be pretty in salads.  And Tyee, an old standby.

This evening I took the short walk I’ve been taking when the weather is good, down past the pond and onto the trail that leads down to Morgan Creek.  The trout lilies have emerged and their grey-green mottled leaves line the path.  Rounding a bend the trail follows along the water, past a laurel bluff on the far side hanging over a tumbling outcrop of white quartz that continues on our side of the creek in a lumpy mound of white boulders covered with patches of moss.  Walking down stream I come to the confluence of the pond creek. This is the sight where we do our stream watch 4 times a year.  

If there’s water.  The level has been pretty good this winter, though it still seems a bit low to me and I fear without a wet spring, it will dry up quick once the trees leaf out.  

Lot corner marker at the confluence of Pond creek and Morgan

There are signs of changes coming to this stretch of trail.  Neighbors-to-be that own the land on this corner of the creek are preparing to build.  I don’t relish it.  We’ve been spoiled having that hilltop all to ourselves, covered with old trees, dropping down a steep hillside to the creek.  This plot also has the pond creek cutting through the center of the ten acres.  This is one sweet spot.  I would build a house there if I owned the land.   But I’m not looking forward to the process; hammers, radios, saws and drills for many months.  From this point I walk back up what I refer to as fern alley to the dam where I sit on this little bench to see what I might see.  
The other day there were a pair of mallards and a pair of geese.   Today only a lone goose flew up off the water as I approached, circled over the farm and honked off into the distance.  His wings were so broad I could clearly hear them flapping.  I wonder how much energy it must take to lift their big bodies into the air?  The spring peepers and upland chorus frogs were singing up a storm.  Looking across the pond, through the woods over towards the dairy, there is a stripe of hilltop pasture that glows emerald, lit brilliant by the late day sunshine shooting across it.
 As I crossed the bridge over the stream to head back home, two Carolina wrens flew out from under the bridge, it seemed like I had nearly stepped on one of them because it appeared to fly literally out from between my feet!   They fly out from the shed whenever I go in there to put things away around dusk.  Soon we’ll be pulling there nests from every nook and cranny.  They’re incorrigible.

It’s time to go into the kitchen and scrounge up some supper.  I’m thinking chickpeas I cooked yesterday, a bag of kale from the garden, the last Greek lamb sausage and maybe some brown rice.  But you never know what might turn up once I start rooting around in the fridge.


C Kay said...

Was thinking of you when out walking earlier and saw the trout lilies in bloom Crazy! Sorry our paths didn't cross!

Maria Hitt said...

Me too- been thinking of you- too crazy busy to pick up the phone! want to hear about your trip, let's talk soon