Agave Update

Last month I shared the story of our local celebrity Agave plant. You might recall that this momma plant set up her once-in-a-lifetime flower stalk a wee bit early in the season. When she quickly out grew her greenhouse in the Halifax Public Gardens, she had to me moved outside into some very chilly temps. She attracted National attention as we all crossed our fingers for her.

Just after I shared the post with you, we suffered some pretty seriously freezing temps. It cold enough to pretty much wipe out the wine grape crop and half the blueberry crop (just to name a few) province-wide.

We worried.

Her flower stalk completely stopped growling. It was even reported that the Agave had suffered too much and had, in fact, died before she could bloom.

We mourned.

But! Look!!

Just when we’d abandoned hope, she rallied! And today, a closer look suggests that she is ready to bloom!

At least, that’s how it looks to me.

It’s nice to see that she has lots of company in her garden bed now. Including two sister agaves.

I’m going to have to drive into town next week to check again. I’ll be expecting some flowers.

Stay tuned….

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Liquid Sunshine

The 24th of May

Is the Queen’s birthday,

And if we don’t get a holiday,

We’ll all run away!

(A little rhyme from my grandfather’s childhood)

I’m not sure why we, here in Canada, still recognize Queen Victoria’s birthday with a holiday weekend, but I’m not complaining.

Neither, it seems, is anyone else.

Maybe because if falls nicely in May just in time to throw ourselves at the garden with enthusiasm.

Anyway, a walk through Halifax’s Formal Victorian Public Gardens, seems a nice way to tip our hat to Her Majesty. Even though it was raining – pouring, at times.

Hmmm. Someone looks a little impatient with me stopping every moment or two.

Understandable, really, as we were on a mission to find this now famous mama. (It was only me who was interested in strolling 馃槈)

The gardens’ 25 year old agave plant had to be moved out of her greenhouse earlier this spring because her flower stalk had become too tall for the building. The flower stalk can grow 5-6 inches per day, apparently.

And there she is – in her, presently muddy, bed. No flower yet. That might be due to the cool temps, or maybe she just isn’t in a hurry. After all, once the flower sets seeds, the mother plant will die.

Take your time, dear, and enjoy the Spring. There is a new queen in the Gardens.

Long may you reign.

WPC – liquid

Rush Hour Traffic

This group of travellers made their way past our house yesterday just at suppertime. A moment before the photo was taken, my small flock of chickens were moving between their hooves. (I grabbed for the camera – too late – moment had passed). If you squint, you might be able to see some of the birds in the background.

A few minutes later, a skunk made her way past the barn. She was followed by the whole flick of chickens. I’m not sure if they were “showing her the door”, or just really curious. But the followed her to the hedge.

Again, I missed the shot. The skunk was out of sight. But I did catch the crew, apparently making sure that she was leaving. I confess, the thought made me smile!

It was a busy, high traffic late afternoon here. On the edge of the woods.

I was, however, extra vigilant when I went out at dusk to secure the birds for the night – to make sure Little Miss Skunk hadn’t made her way back. 馃槈

Sweet!

You know what’s sweet?

Maple syrup!

You know what’s really sweet?

When the maple syrup comes from your own back yard!

And, you know what’s EVEN sweeter?

When the maple sap starts to run earlier in the season than usual, and you manage to figure that out before it’s too late! 馃榾

You see, typically, the sap starts to run in mid-March. And it’s those days when the temps are above 5C in today and well below freezing at night that triggers the sap to glow up the tree. But we all know, (of us, everywhere!) that weather patterns are bonkers, do we must remain vigilant and observant.

In early February, I noticed the maple buds starting to swell and took a chance. Taps in trees – buckets under taps – sap boiled down (40 litres of sap = 1 litre of syrup). And, voila!!

Our own Maple Syrup! SWEET!!!

Just Dropping In …

This lovely lady rested beside me for a moment or two.

Dragonflies carry with them a weight of myth and folklore.

In Feng Shui, dragonflies mean change, new beginnings and bring all kinds of nice things.

Some people think a visit from a dragonfly is a visit from someone from heaven.

Another take suggests that they represent self-awareness and living in the moment. This might come from the fact that dragonflies spend most of their lives as nymphs, living as adults for only usually a few months.

All of this adds to the beautiful mystic of the dragonfly. These elegant and versatile fliers are equally at home in the air, on land and on the water. And they eat mosquitoes!! Or, so I’m told. A positive characteristic in any visitor.

One thing I know for sure, when this particular dragonfly alighted beside me, the world stood still for a few breaths as I marvelled in this small gift.

WPC – temporary