Gaggle Landscaping 101

20190707_174030

Have a great day! – Chris

Advertisements

wordless wednesday

DSC02658

Camera: Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W170

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

Earth Day 2019 Walkabout – NWF Certified Wildlife Habitat

Carol and I have had our backyard certified by the NWF for many years now – it’s a fun way to get your kids interested in the environment (even if it’s only their own yard) and to foster a respect for our plant in the big picture. All great things start small.

Here’s some images from this morning’s walkabout (4.22.2019) – our little part of the Earth right here in northeast Florida.

DSCF9845

There are over 15 bald cypress trees mixed in with river maples, some oaks, bay trees, and of course, plenty of maidenhair ferns for protective groundcover. There’s a small natural bog and some wetlands too. I’m proud to say that I’ve planted all but 6 trees out of the nearly 60 trees in the yard. Since we moved here in the autumn of 1991 we’ve lived long enough to enjoy the fruits of our labor as most of the cypress trees have grown to be about 40 feet tall.

DSCF9853

One of the many bald cypress trees that inhabit the yard. This one is a “baby” from the first tree that we planted nearly 30 years ago. (see below)

DSCF9849

This bald cypress we brought home from the nursery in the back of our SUV when it was maybe 5 feet tall. It’s now the “daddy or mommy” to most of the other cypress trees in the yard.

We live in a somewhat typical suburban neighborhood with the exception of the backyard has not one blade of grass. No mowing, no lawn maintenance – no chemicals.

Other trees that we’ve planted – Leyland cypress, Japanese black pine, and river birch. All of these do extremely well in the semi-wet environment of our yard and all are native to Florida.

DSCF9839

A young bay tree starting its life amongst the ferns.

DSCF9840

We recently added a wren birdhouse (a gift from our daughter Lindsay) and a family of Carolina wrens have taken up residence. Yeah!

DSCF9843

The sun sculpture on the fence is a favorite of the local anole lizards – they like poking their heads out from the mouth and the sun holds on to some late afternoon sunlight and warmth. Here in the early morning hours, it catches enough sunlight to make it a cozy home.

As the summer wears on, these garden ornaments make a perfect landing spot for dragonflies while patrolling their territory.

DSCF9844

Our crepe myrtle which we purchased through the Arbor Day Foundation (it came as a stick 10 years ago) has grown quite nicely over the years and provides a nice display of dramatic color and texture throughout the year right outside our garden window. The local cardinals and squirrels love the seeds it produces too.

The crepe myrtle in this part of Florida does well without much fuss – it gets all of its water from rainfall and I’ve never fertilized it or use chemicals on insects. The birds and lizards do an excellent job at keeping the bugs in check.

DSCF8560

Marsh rabbit – aka, “Bun-Buns” as Lindsay used to call them.

Other dwellers of the yard – otters (rarely now do we see them), hawks, cardinals, bluebirds, wrens, crows, vultures, marsh rabbits, squirrels, snakes (all types except pythons), lizards, frogs, river cooters (turtles), gopher tortoise, bats, owls, racoon, opossum, armadillo, bobcat (rarely but they do show up), coyotes (only recently), and there was a report of a black bear a few years back. No deer as the yard is way too wet and the woods are a bit dense.

It’s super easy to convert your backyard into a wildlife habitat – just get rid of the grass, plant native trees (a bunch of them), provide some groundcover and water, plant native bushes and flowers and then sit back and enjoy the show. It sure beats mowing and the birds and the bees will thank you each and every day!

Certify your yard with the NWF (go online, it’s easy to do), buy your trees through the National Arbor Day Foundation, shop for native trees and shrubs through local nurseries, add plenty of environmentally friendly rocks (if you’re not blessed with them naturally), mulch to discourage weeds, and share your knowledge with others.

Happy Earth Day y’all! Peace!

Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2019 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

 

Happy SUNday! – the colors of the garden

Our North Florida garden delights with its subtle hues and wonderful textures.

DSCF8607 (1) logo

Suburban hunter with its kill.

20181204_163847

A majestic bald cypress with its crown of rusty needles.

DSCF8602 (1)

An art project left to fend for itself.

DSCF8603 (1)

Cooper post cap weathers to a lovely patina.

DSCF8608 (2)

The colors of our Florida autumn.

Thanks for stopping by! – Chris

Please respect that all content, including photos and text, are the property of this blog and its owner, Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Yashica Sailor Boy, Yashica Chris.

Copyright © 2015-2018 Yashica Pentamatic Fanatic, Chris Whelan
All rights reserved.

 

Fort Clinch State Park – Florida

Fort Clinch State Park is a beautiful 1,400 acre park on the extreme northeastern tip of Amelia Island. The fort makes up only one small part of this diverse and ecologically important park – here the old Florida can be appreciated for its tall sand dunes covered with a coastal maritime forest. More can be found https://www.floridastateparks.org/park/Fort-Clinch

DSC02634

DSC02635

DSC02636

DSC02637

DSC02639

Beautiful gopher tortoises roam the dunes at will. Here this one was at the base of one of the fort’s brick walls.

DSC02643

Beautiful animals and fun to watch.

DSC02647

Along the Atlantic Ocean coast of the park.

DSC02650

Half mile walking and fishing pier – severely damaged by Hurricane Matthew last October 7, 2016.

DSC02658

Osprey keeping a watchful eye on me and the ocean.

DSC02651

At the end of the fishing pier. A jetty continues out farther into the ocean. It’s a great place to do some wave watching and capturing some great cloud formations.

It’s well worth your time to visit the park – between the ocean access and the St. Marys river access is a wonderful coastal forest and of course, the fort.

Thanks for your visit!

Camera: Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W170

Chris & Carol