Sunday, September 30, 2018

From September 18, 2018

We flew to Victoria, British Columbia on September 18. The "Victoria" airport is actually 25 k from Victoria in Sidney. When we arrived, we had lunch at a local pub and then walked to a local art centre where a display of papier mâché pieces were showing.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Leaves and Bees - OK Wasps

            These are the leaves of the Thicket Creeper / Vigne Vierge Commune / (Parthenocissus vitacea).
Used to be (Parthenocissus inserta).

            So far the Thicket Creepers, some Cherries, and Sumac leaves have turned colour.

            We have had German Yellowjackets, we think, in a gourd on our porch for about half the summer but now we have the more common Easter Yellowjackets in a ground nest in our labyrinth. One needs to be careful where one walks these days. (Two of our running club members got stung on one of the trails in Brantford yesterday as we were out running. Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!)

Monday, September 10, 2018


            I do not know what this is yet. Any ideas?

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Purple Crown-Vetch
Coronille Bigarrée
(Securigera varia)

            One of many flowers found last Friday along the Hamilton Waterfront Trail.

Thursday, September 06, 2018

        This gourd served as a House Wren nesting spot for two or three summers but this year some Yellowjacket wasps took over. We debated, then left them alone. They have been buzzing in and out all summer and recently started adding on some decorations on the outside. We are hoping they keep minding their own business as Yellowjacket stings can be very painful. They are very close to where we have coffee on our east porch several mornings each week so we have been watching and being careful to not disturb them other than taking a few photos.

            I found a dead one on the table on the porch this morning.

            I took a photo of the Red-seeded Dandelion / Pissenlit à Graines Rouges / (Taraxicum erythrospermum) from next to our east porch. The "red" seeds really need to be compared to a regular Dandelion but I could not find one. I will add a photo when I can.

            Here is a close up of part of the flowering head of the Big Bluestem Grass / Barbon de Gérard / (Andropogon gerardi) that we have growing in a stump in our yard.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

A Fly and a Flower and a Leaf Hopper

            I found this tiny fly on a Willow Herb. With help, I got the identification down to "a syrphid fly in the genus toxomerus."

            Here I am more confident. This is a very late flowering Red Raspberry / Framboisier rouge / (Rubus idaeus). Almost all of the other Red Raspberries have finished flowering, finished having berries, and have given up the berries to hungry animals, including me. For some reason, this plant decided to have another go at reproduction.

            I found this Leaf Hopper (Acanalonia conica) in a spider web this morning.

Monday, September 03, 2018

A Modest Walk

        Four years ago today, September 3, 2014, Fleur-Ange, her friend Pauline, and I started a 480 km walk from Montreal, Quebec, down the length of the state of Vermont, to the village of Deerfield, Massachusetts as an active, preformance art project by Fleur-Ange. Today, we did a much more modest 8 km along one shore of the Gordon Pittock Reservoir in Woodstock. (It did not take as long to do.)

        This morning, I took a photo of the road in front of our house showing all the Labour Day traffic. Yes, all of one car in the distance. Meanwhile there was a dawn chorus of one cardinal, one crow, one tree frog and a collection of crickets and other chirping, buzzing insects.

Sunday, September 02, 2018

Wild Flowers of the Morning

            First I walked the dog for the small amount that she wanted then I continued, without her, for the walk we took all last winter and spring. She has not been keen on walking in the heat and mosquitoes of high summer.

            During the walk I found 64 wild flowers in our meadows that I could identify:

Alexanders, Golden
Asparagus *
Aster, Arrow-Leaved
Aster, Flat-Topped
Aster, Frost
Aster, New England
Aster, White Wood
Avens, White
Basil, Wild
Beggar Tick, Tall
Black-Eyed Susan
Bluestem, Big (Grass)
Butter-And-Eggs *
Carpenter's Square (Figwort)
Celandine *
Clover, Red *
Comfrey, Common *
Coneflower, Cutleaf (Outhouse Plant)
Coneflower, Purple *
Coneflower, Tall
Coneflower, Thin-Leaved * 
Coreopsis, Tall
Cucumber, Wild
Cup Plant
Daisy, Oxeye *
Dandelion, Common *
Dock, Prairie
Everlasting, Sweet (Fragrant Cudweed)
Fleabane, Lesser Daisy
Globe-thistle, Great *
Goldenrod, Blue-Stemmed
Goldenrod, Canada
Goldenrod, Gray
Goldenrod, Lance-Leaved
Goldenrod, Tall
Hedge-Parsley, Upright *
Herb Robert *
Horehound, Water
Indian Tobacco
Knotgrass, Common *
Knotweed, Virginia (Jumpseed)
Lady's Thumb, Spotted *
Live-Forever *
Medick, Black *
Motherwort *
Mountain Mint, Virginia
Nightshade, Eastern Black
Parsnip, Water
Pilewort (American Burnweed)
Plantain, English *
Queen Anne's Lace *
Ragweed, Great
Stickseed, Virginia
Sunflower, Pale Leaved
Tea, Oswego
Thistle, Bull *
Touch-Me-Not, Spotted
Vervain, White
Willow Herb, Purple-Veined (P-leaved)
Wood Sorrel, Yellow

Yarrow, Common *

            Then I found one wild flower that I am not sure about. The plant looks like a violet but the flower does not fit the pattern correctly:

[Note from Colin Chapman via Instagram:

"The flower has been affected by some pathogen. Youre right, the petals look weird, but the calyx is typical and everything else points to Labrador Violet (V. labradorica) if you ask me!"]

Tea Bag Notes

            I have been drinking "Traditional Medicinal Herbal Teas" for several years first thing in the morning. This morning I mixed Hibiscus & Ginger teas with a spoonful of honey and a spoonful of chia but I suddenly noticed that there were quotes on the tea bag tabs. How have I not seen these before? Have they always been there? Wondering.

            On Friday I did my usual wild flower walks on the Royal Botanical Gardens property. Here is one of my finds:

White Lettuce
aka White Snakeroot
Prenanthe Blanche
(Nabalus albus)
(was Prenanthes alba)

Saturday, September 01, 2018

Running +

            The sumac is already showing fall colours.

            The training run for the day was 27 km. Thanks to Ann Myhals for running company on the first 16 k and to Anita Bosagri-Chevarie for bike company on the last 11 k.

            As you can see from the chart, I did fairly well for the first 20 k then started faltering and then ended up walking for most of the last 3 or 4 km. My feet were really getting sore by the end and I was also running out of energy in spite of all the water, Stingers, Pretzels and Gels supplements. The +26 (+35)C temperatures i.e. +79 (+95)F for my U.S. friends, may have also been a factor.

            Our dog, Sadie, likes to wait under the breakfast table for me to finish breakfast as she knows that after breakfast we go out for a walk. That being said, during the heat of the summer and during this past month of mosquitoes, she has not been quite as keen as she used to be for going out.