The mid-December sun, traveling low across southern sky casts long shadows on the icey blue face of a small pond and gently lights the landscape beyond. Decembers light is like no other and helps me keep track of the time like no wall calendar or wristwatch can.
I have always found mushrooms fascinating life forms. Not plant, not animal yet vitally important for the health of both plants and animals. However, they are a bugger to photograph yet I never stop trying.
Paul Stamets wrote a great book on Fungus call “Mycellium Running” and delivered a very interesting TED talk several years ago:
A favorite at picnics near and far.
Take three bees, an assortment of flowers, dash of pollen and splash of nectar, blend together and voila, a fine little dish recreating the bounty of summer.
Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend.
Working hard from spring through summer the plants have done their thing. Now all that hard work is proudly on display.
The Choke Cherries have ripened and will provide food for bears and birds and even a human or two.
The Oregon Grape has produced berries of purple-blue that will help feed the grouse and pheasants as well as waxwings.
The wild rose has a a tough go of it as these bushes are a favorite food of deer. These Rose Hips were hanging high on the only branch not trimmed low to the ground by a local family of deer. A mother Mule Deer and her two fawns can really make quick work of a rose bush.
The snowberry bushes are numerous and cover the forest understory. This year they have done well and the berries will provide food for songbirds, game birds and many small mammals as winter rolls into town.
The plants have been busy and the fruits of their labor show.
Rocky Mountain Bee Plant: Cleome serrulata was a wonderful late blooming wildflower near us this year. It drew numerous species of bees, and butterflies, from near and far and always had visitors when in bloom providing pollinators with a generous sip of nectar.
Growing up to 4 ft tall Bee Plant stands out in the fields of tall fall grasses.A beautiful and very sculptural wildflower Bee Plant is fun to photograph as well.
According to the USDA “Cleome serrulata is an important cultural plant for many Southwestern Indian tribes. The young, tender shoots and leaves are good sources of vitamin A and calcium. In the past they were used as potherbs or medicinally as teas for fevers and other ailments. The seeds were ground and used to make gruel or bread. The Navajo still use the plant as a source of yellow-green dye for their beautiful wool rugs and blankets. Many pueblo tribes use a concentrated form of dye, made from boiling the plant into a thick black resin, to paint designs on pottery or for decorating their baskets.”
On this particular afternoon the little green sweat bees were enjoying the plant to no end.
Every flower seems to have a visitor.
And one last look as even the bee fly mimics got in on the action.
Colors and textures telling time.
Time measured on a bigger scale.
Time without time.