Sunday, January 29, 2012

I pledge you my trough

When I was home in December 2010, my father and I took a drive to Pleasant Point on the Eastern Shore. While wandering around our cousin's property (Dad's first cousin, my "once-removed" from me, you see), I saw this stump with crowberry, or Empetrum growing on it. It's a lovely stump (I think I blogged it back when I first saw it), and I fell in love with crowberry even more that day. I think we have a tendency to overlook our common native plants. I know I did. What is crowberry to the glories of heather, etc., etc. Well, I still love heather, but I love crowberry too.

Pleasant Point Stump

This stump became my inspiration when I decided to finally try making some hypertufa things this summer. The trough of the blog post title is in the next two photos. I used two old plastic dish-washing basins as the form for this trough.* I found some crowberry growing in at transition of some very compressed gravel and some very wet clay. I found random bits of sedum and a tiny sempervivum already growing in the yard. I used composted leaf mulch, peat and sand for the soil, and mulched the whole shebang with pea gravel and old mussel shells. And this past December the crowberry took on the deep reddish winter tone and the sedum started to colour up and...! I was pretty happy with my first adventure in hypertufa.

Hypertufa trough

My favourite part of the hypertufa-making was carving and smoothing and adding texture to the still-soft concrete.

Hypertufa trough detail All planted and settled in for the winter. *Just typing trough at the moment confuses my brain. Through? Troff? tr-owf?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I really miss my cat

It's just one of those things you start to fixate on when your brain is ignoring the much bigger, more immediate problem in your life. Still, Livy! I don't remember the last time I posted about my cat. But she's adorable. And an enormous stress relief.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Rainy Tuesday in Guelph

Rainy Tuesday in Guelph by scosborne
Rainy Tuesday in Guelph, a photo by scosborne on Flickr.

Rainy Tuesday in Guelph

I really am enjoying the whole phone/flickr/blog interface, even if I have only used it to post pictures so far.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Devil's Wheelbarrows

Devils Wheelbarrows

My father has always called skate eggs "devil's wheelbarrows" so that, in turn, is what I have always called them. Wikipedia says alternate (colloquial) terms for a skate egg is mermaid's purse or devil's purse. I wonder where the wheelbarrow came from, then? Anyway, there were many skate eggs on the shoreline south of Virginia Beach (near Back Bay Wildlife Refuge - I don't know the name of the beach) on the day we were there. All these were found within an 8 foot diameter, and then abandoned to the waves and sea foam.

In other news, you might notice I did some fiddling today with my layout and theme. I was bored with the old one, particularly because my photos ended up too small. I hope this is an improvement, but if it isn't, please let me know. I'm only writing a thesis so there's always a time for some procrastination. I worked quite diligently on the thesis today, so I gave myself permission to make that joke.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Test blanket

Test blanket by scosborne
Test blanket, a photo by scosborne on Flickr.

Test blanket - just testing out my new phone's abilities.