Thursday, September 25, 2008

Native Trees

"I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree ..." by Joyce Kilmer A few comments got me to thinking about the possibility of growing the "Mighty Oak" in another location other than the one I am most familiar with, here at Timber Life. Hearing from some readers out in Idaho sparked my interest and research has brought some answers. In my years of growing plants, I have learned that it is more productive to look for native species that are acclimated to your growing conditions; temperature fluctuations, soil composition and moisture needs. Even the seed produced by these plants seem to be better suited to reproduction in those conditions than those gained from outside sources. One information source of "why we should pick native plants" can be found here at the IDNR. My information quest took me to Idaho Plant Nurseries to checkout what they were growing. I was fortunate enough to find a list of Oaks that are available for planting, which you will find below.
Swamp White Oak(Quercus bicolor) Deciduous 4A-8A Full Sun, Partial Sun, Shade wet Gambel Oak (Quercus gambelii) Deciduous 4A-8A Full Sun, Partial Sun, Shade medium Bur Oak (Quercus macrocarpa) Deciduous 3A-8A Full Sun wet Pin Oak (Quercus palustris) Deciduous 4A-8A Full Sun wet Northern Red Oak (Quercus rubra) Deciduous 3B-8A Full Sun medium Columnar English Oak (Quercus robur 'Fastigiata') Deciduous 4A sun medium English Oak (Quercus robur) Deciduous 4B-8A Full Sun medium Heritage Oak (Quercus x macdanielii 'Heritage') Deciduous 4A sun medium The thought of growing Black Walnuts came as well. I found a publication by the University of Idaho on the care of Black Walnuts in a plantation setting. That gives me a clue they are available there, but maybe not in all parts of the state due to growing conditions. Hope this will help those who are looking to use plant materials from other states,or planting zones. Not totally impossible with some adjustments. (Information for the Oaks was taken from an Idaho Nursery- Teton Trees, Rupert,ID.)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sadie Says - GONE NUTS!!!!

Crunch, Crunch, Crunch.... YUMMY, or at least I think yummy??? The last couple of weeks I have been getting a taste of some commodities that are hitting the ground. I will use the phrase used by Chicken Little in the children's story,"The Sky is Falling!" Every time I walk outside these days I hear something thudding onto the ground or plunking down onto the pick-up sitting in the drive. Mom keeps telling me what's happening ,but I'm just a puppy ...reminders are always welcome. We have a friendly competition to see who can find those hidden morsels on the ground every time we are outside. I thought since Mom was so interested in them I would give them a try. Great CRUNCH factor! I will put a name to the tree and it's nuts. It is Hickory a member of the Walnut family. You've seen our Oak trees which have had a real good crop of acorns this season. The animals dependent on them for a food source should have a good supply, at least until the snow covers them over. Then there are Black Walnut trees galore. Some of the walnuts have already dropped from the trees leaving the rind to mature and begin the cycle of the squirrels constant drive to tuck them beneath the dirt until they are all hidden.(EVERYWHERE!) ;)

Friday, September 19, 2008

I Love Your Blog Award

I was up early checking out the Blogs I try to frequent everyday. Stopped by Marian's Hunting Stories etc.,etc., etc..., Simply Outdoors, onto The Hunter's Wife , just to name a few. OH MY Goodness!!! What am I reading here? After rubbing my eyes to get the sleep out , finding my glasses... I found my site among some other Bloggers that Jody tagged for a little fun info exchange. Looks very simple,just copy, paste, and personlize. I'm Game! Here it goes. ;) 1. Where is your cell phone? Counter top 2. Where is your significant other? Working on my car 3. Your hair color? Brown 4. Your mother? Recuperating from knee revision surgery 5. Your father? Deceased 6. Your favorite thing? Computer 7. Your dream last night? None - Do I sleep? ;) 8. Your dream/goal? To be able to travel whenever I feel like it 9. The room you’re in? Living room 10. Your hobby? One of my hobbies is raising plants 11. Your fear? Crossing huge bodies of water 12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Financially sound 13. Where were you last night? Home 14. What you’re not? A diva 15. One of your wish-list items? To get all the sports equipment I want 16. Where you grew up? Iowa /Arizona 17. The last thing you did? Got out of bed 18. What are you wearing? PJ's 19. Your TV? 8 year old zenith 20. Your pet? Sadie 21. Your computer? Acer Aspire 22. Your mood? Happy 23. Missing someone? Hubby when he has a lot to do. 24. Your car? Chevy Cavalier 25. Something you’re not wearing? Shoes 26. Favorite store? Outdoor supply stores 27. Your summer? Hot 28. Love someone? Hubby 29. Your favorite color? Blue 30. When is the last time you laughed? Today 31. Last time you cried? Tuesday while I was doing dishes I’m suppose to tag 7 others. I believe some of the ones I would tag have already been tagged, my pass along list will be shorter. Okay girls, here is your "I Love Your Blog Award." Marian's Hunting Stories etc., etc.,etc... Windyridge at On a Ridge Artemis at 12 Months of Winter

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Enabling the Disabled Young Hunter

The season is soon upon us for a group of disabled young hunters here in Iowa, to get out into the field to participate in a deer hunt. I must give credit to local reporter Julie Probasco-Sowers, in making us aware of the great things happening in the lives of those who might not otherwise get the opportunity. Hunter Zach Mecham, will be sporting a gun rest specifically made for his wheelchair to steady his gun for a more sure shot. He plans to use a custom- made shotgun to reduce the recoil to make his hunt more manageable. It is thanks to two gunsmiths, Rick Barton and Charlie Soderquist at the Scheels All Sports in West Des Moines, that he will be able to participate in an event called theWhitetail Challenge. Zach, will be one of 15 people taking part in the hunt, taking place on property owned by Mill Creek Ranch and Radakovich Cattle Co. Owners Ron Mason of Mill Creek Ranch, Steve and Penny Radakovich of Radakovich Cattle Co. are co-founders of the North Branch Wildlife Management organization started in 2005 . They wanted to supply a place to those who aren't able to go on their own into hunting situations. Partnering with the Department of Natural Resources, the Quality Deer Management Association, and the Spinal Cord injury Association of Iowa to gain the resources needed to make the total experience possible for the young, and disabled hunters of any age or ability. The hunt for the 15 youngsters is to take place September 26-28th, not that far away. Zach ,14, has been target shooting since he was 11 or 12. He has 4 brothers, two older and two younger, that are active in hunting. Hunting is one of the things that they enjoy as a family and he wants to be apart of it as well. It is really great to know that Zach, and others ,have been empowered by individuals who envision character building, mentoring events to assist in managing their area wildlife, and helping to fulfill dreams...

Sadie Says - Fence Wrangling

Working a fence line here... Mom needed some help to start moving old barbed wire and wooden fence posts. The best I could do was checkout the progress. Tried pulling on the wire , but Mom chased me away. Told me I could supervise on this job. We are manicuring the space between yard, and pasture in preparations for some plans to take place in the Spring. Mom will be taking out some shrubs , her little garden, and 2 trees that seemed to take forever for her to get growing. The deer have a way of pruning small plants that can lead to years of small plants. Better be on my way or Mom will wonder what I'm up to. She keeps a pretty close eye on what I'm doing. What a gal! ;)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Sites of Nature

Today is a day of just plain catching candid shots of nature on the go. This Monarch Caterpillar seemed to be hard at work. Needing to stoke up for the next stage in his life. Found a perfect place in my flowerbed on the "butterfly weed",Asclepias tuberosa, a member of the milkweed family. The Monarch is just one butterfly that seems to enjoy the wild milkweed.This little caterpillar probably won't have time to make it to Mexico with the others. We seem to be having our share of these black, bald scavengers called a Turkey Vulture.We often see groups of two or three. This time of year they are another group of birds that band together and migrate to warmer climes. I am very sure that everyone is seeing abundant populations in your neighborhood riding the thermals as well. Have you ever used the phrase "Busy as a bee" ? Well, truly the bees were busy today gathering some pollen from this "Autumn Joy" Sedum. They won't be caught unprepared for the upcoming winter! The weather has been very pleasant between rains as of late. It has been very enticing to be outside checking things out, just to amble on down the path. ;) Hope all of you are having a bit of time to get out and enjoy your surroundings...

Monday, September 8, 2008

Monarch Butterflies on the Move

I caught the Monarchs packed on the ends of the branches on the oak trees here. Time for them to be moving on down to the Mississippi Delta and over to Mexico. It appears they are on schedule for the yearly migration...As I moved closer to snap pictures, I disturbed the calm atmosphere. Sending a few butterflies to a different limb to perch in the warm rays of the sun.The number of winged wonders made the branches seem to have sprouted orange leaves as they stretched and fluttered during their brief stop to rest.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Iowa Pheasant News

News I have been waiting to hear sounds a bit bleak.The report from the largest Iowa newspaper, huntress Juli Probasco-Sowers, gives us some statistics that are not positive for those sportswomen and men who like to head out after the Ring Necked Pheasant. Iowa Pheasant season is slated for October 25th, 2008 and runs through January 10th, 2009. Last year I noticed a definite population decline in our neighborhood and this year, even though I have heard birds in the area, I only saw a total of three. Maybe not out at the same time they are. Weather has definitely been a stress factor in bird health. With expanding local populations of turkey, predatory animals like coyote and fox can also create a lower number for growth . Any birds that do survive the weather are faced with other challenges for survival. Even though Sadie, who will be six months old on the 18th of this month, won't be on the Pheasant trail this year. We are going to be waiting until next year when she will have some age behind her...and listen to commands a little better. Here's wishing success to all those hunters who are looking to get out after that smart Upland bird the Pheasant! ;)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Turkey Trot

These toms found it pleasing to stop by for a few bugs twice in 12 hours. Hubby caught them yesterday evening on his camera. Tried my amateur turkey calling skill to see what kind of reaction we would get from them. If you watch the video you will hear all kinds of activity going on in the house. It was surprising that all the noise didn't chase them back into the timber sooner than it did. We find each encounter entertaining from day to day...;)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Sadie Says "Meeting the family!"

Quality time with nephew,Champ It all started Friday night, a little before midnight. Somebody was walking into my house that I had not had the opportunity to meet yet. Woke my Mom up with my barking to make sure all was as it was supposed to be. My Dad had left earlier in the day to go to an antique airplane fly-in for the weekend...So, it wasn't him coming in. My youngest two legged sister was bringing my 2 canine nieces and nephew to visit. The humans had plans for a family picture on Sunday. This is the first time since leaving my mom and family in South Dakota that I have been in a doggy group. I really didn't know how to fit in for a bit. Getting nipped a couple of times by the two old ladies gave me a complex...Sorry it took me almost until the time they left to feel like I belonged to "The Pack." Cesar Milan, "The Dog Whisperer", would be proud of us! ;)In the lead Peaches, back left Champ, right of Peaches is Kahlua, then me at right tail end Followed the group out for a play time in the puddles before they had to get back in the car for the long ride home on Monday morning. I was at a loss when they were gone. Kept checking the room where they stayed while they were here,and went outside to look around where we played. Had a lot of fun being apart of their group.
Guess I will have to get in the car one of these days with Mom and Dad to go visit...