11 June 2010

Garden Update

I spoke too soon when I said that I was having a good gardening year so far. The plague of grasshoppers continues.
I read somewhere that grasshoppers don't eat tomatoes. Well they do in Texas.
Here is a  picture of an herb/flower bed by my kitchen window. It was taken on May 21.
Here is a picture taken on June 11.
Notice anything missing? Yep, the grasshoppers ate my chive plant down to the ground. In case you are wondering why I don't fight back, trust me, I've tried. Since these are herbs and veggies, I don't want to put anything too toxic on them. I applied Nolo Bait to my whole yard earlier in the spring, when the hoppers where little. More recently I have been applying a plant oil based insect repellent that was recommended by my local gardening center guy (sorry, can't remember the name.)
It's hard not to take it personally, when there are 100 acres of hay for the little punks to nibble on, but no, they want to eat my tomato instead. I  guess the one upside to the whole thing is that they eat Johnson grass (a weed that grows in the hay field.)

Snake Hypnosis

No, I haven't found a new career as a snake charmer.
As I drove down the driveway this morning, I saw movement on the road ahead. I stopped and watched as a snake crossed from right to left in front of my car. It took it's time and as it did, I just watched it. It was only as it reached the other side that I said "Aha! I have a blog. I should get a picture of this snake." By the time that I had grabbed my camera out of my bag and turned it on, this is all there was to see. (And if you don't like snakes, you probably don't want to see even this much of a snake.)
So I continued on my way along the road. About a quarter of a mile later, I saw something dark on the road. I slowed down and looked, and indeed it was another snake. This one was smaller and moving fairly fast. Again, I sat and watched and only after it had reached the grass on the right side of the road did I remember that I had a camera sitting in the seat beside me.

Snakes seem to have this hypnotic effect on me. I did check both snakes to make sure they weren't poisonous. But otherwise I was content just to sit and watch. This seems odd to me because I don't hesitate to take pictures of rabbits and armadillos and grasshoppers and spiders and every other critter that wanders around the farm.

For the record, if a snake crawled into my sleeping bag while camping (or something like that) I would squeal and scream and act like an idiot. No doubt about that.

Anyway, so the snake count for the year is up to at least 7.

09 June 2010

Making Hay