Weekend Wandering

Some pictures from Long Branch Environmental Education Center. This place was pretty neat.


Some pictures from a short walk in Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest, an old growth forest about 2 hours west of Asheville, NC. Some of the tulip poplars there are over 400 years old.


We found a recently hatched luna moth. 💚


Some cute Kentuckian.

Sam’s Knob

Went out to my favorite spot over the weekend. Dodder has taken over the high spot above the meadow below Sam’s Knob.


Flowers in the meadow.


Lots of sweet bee balm in the meadow.


Meadow grasses.


Meadow ❤️


Black Balsam in the distance.


Views from the short trail up to Sam’s Knob.


Views from the top of Sam’s Knob.


Trail Critters.

Garden Critters and Blooms

Flying Cloud Farm is only 6 miles from my apartment. They have community UPick flower fields, so I find myself there with my macro lens pretty often.


Here are some shots of my garden from earlier in the week. The tomatoes in the front bed are about two feet taller than I am right now and I think collectively they threaten to bring down the stakes. Next year I’ll opt for metal instead of wood.


My first dahlia bloomed! (!!!!!!!!)


Ammi and zinnias.


Not pictured below: the squash and the cucumbers that won’t stop growing.

Pictured below: very tasty pickles.


Garden critters – including a monarch caterpillar! There are at least 5 of them nestled in the milkweed and we’re all really excited about watching them pupate.

Bloodroot on the Appalachian Trail

Spending time in the woods yesterday reminded me of yet another Mary Oliver poem: ‘How I go to the woods’.

Ordinarily, I go to the woods alone, with not a single
friend, for they are all smilers and talkers and therefore
unsuitable.

I don’t really want to be witnessed talking to the catbirds
or hugging the old black oak tree. I have my way of
praying, as you no doubt have yours.

Besides, when I am alone I can become invisible. I can sit
on the top of a dune as motionless as an uprise of weeds,
until the foxes run by unconcerned. I can hear the almost
unhearable sound of the roses singing.

If you have ever gone to the woods with me, I must love
you very much.

… bloodroot!

FOTD – January 27th (thistle)

Thistle! Aside from wild carrot, it’s my favorite summer wildflower.

Here is a shot of my favorite meadow in WNC. It’s chock full of thistle and pollinators throughout the summer and it’s one of my favorite places in the world.

September Yellows

Septembers in Western North Carolina are beautiful. The days are still warm, but they seem to get a bit shorter and the nights cool off significantly. These shots were taken at my favorite place in the world, the valley below Sam’s Knob, located in Shining Rock Wilderness area. I found plenty of lovely yellows with my Fuji XT30 and the Laowa 65mm macro lens.


Here are some other fun shots from that day, too.


We went back to another favorite area just above Sam’s Knob a few weeks later. Here are some more September yellows from Black Balsam Knob.