This is July

At last I am able to sit down and write this blog. I have a chest infection which made my concentration levels drop and a lack of interest in doing anything. Looking at the screen made my eyes sore as well. July was interesting as the days became more like Summer than Winter. There hasn’t been much rain so the garden is suffering. Most of the flowers are from elsewhere, some of the birds are from around here and there is a bit of what is that photo. There is a bit of excitement but that will come later. There are quite a number of photos so perhaps a cup of tea or coffee or whatever you drink while sitting have a look at my July.

This is the view from Raspberry Lookout in the Gibraltar Ranges, about 70kms from my place, which is somewhere to the left of the photo a few gullies over.
raspberry lookout_named_gibralter ranges_july 2017
I thought I’d start with the bugs I found. A moth isn’t really a bug but an insect but this beauty had to go in somewhere.moth_named_binna burra_july 2017

We found a caterpillar munching a plant. Look at how much it has eaten for such a small sized caterpillar.
caterpillar_named_binna burra_july 2017

The winter flowering stone fruits are alive with bees.
bee_peach blossom_named_binna burra_july 2017

I was enjoying a cuppa on the verandah when this bloke came buzzing around. I like the confusion of fly and shadow.
fly_named_home_july 2017

At the Raspberry Lookout I found a log. Not just an ordinary log but one that had a lichen that made it look so green.
green log_named_raspberry lookout_july 2017

Can you see the face on this old tree stump. The big cut mark on the left is where the timber cutters used to put a board to stand on to cut the tree down with an axe. The “graffiti” isn’t all that old though.
tree face_named_raspberry lookout_july 2017

My  bestie found this fantastic leaf.
coloured leaf_named_binna burra_july 2017

One day the clouds just decided to look rather special. Something to do with a hot day, cold upper air or whatever.
170712_blog challenge_clouds_feather

“What are you looking at?”
cow_looking_named_ulmarra_july 2017

I call this photo “The Electric Fish”. I would love to tell you how I took the photo but have no idea. The leaves and flowers were in the bottom of the bowl and the spots on the surface are fish food.
170711_electric fish

Late one evening when going for a walk, I saw the red and green leaves glowing in the afternoon sun.
vine_named_binna burra_july 2017

A neighbours place glowed in that afternoon sun. This plant is called Firesticks.
firesticks_named_binna burra_july 2017

I have never looked at a Dandelion flower. Isn’t it beautiful.
dandelion flower_named_binna burra_july 2017

In a garden in Grafton the rest of the garden was bare and a few of the flowers were doing their last gasp but this Gazania stood out among the rest.
gazinia_named_grafton_july 2017

A fragrant Rose. I love Roses.
pink rose_named_binna burra_july 2017

The Grevillea flower shone in the early morning sun.
grevillea flower_named_home_july 2017

Some birds come back every year to spend Winter here or perhaps just drop in for a snack and rest on their migratory route to further warming climes. The Blue-faced Honeyeaters stay around and nest. The mornings and evenings are filled with their calls.
blue faced honmeyeater_honey gem_named_home_july 2017

The Silvereyes flock through, some keep going but some hang around for a while eating and building their strength for the next part of their journey.
silvereye_honey gem_named_home_july 2017
The Figbirds are after the fruiting trees in the rainforest gullies. This Figbird seemed to have an interest in a Eucalypt nut.
figbird_snack_named_binna burra_july 2017

The Lewins Honeyeater found a tasty morsel in the bark of the tree.
lewins honeyeater_snack_named_binna burra_july 2017

It doesn’t look like it was that appealing does it?
lewins honeyeater_tongue_named_binna burra_july 2017

A White-throated Honeyeater, a bowl and a garden bench. There are a number of places where birds can get a drink in my garden.
white throated honeyeater_seat_named_home_july 2017

Going to my besties one day, I came across a flock of Brolgas in a farmers field beside the highway. This is only the second time I have seen Brolgas and to see around twenty was wonderful.
brolgas_named_ulmarra_july 2017

Some birds will do anything not to have their photo taken. The Eurasian Coot did a great dive.
eurasian coot_named_grafton_july 2017

Have you ever been so angry that you just had to shout at a tree?
yellow faced honeyeater_palm_named_home_july 2017

I hadn’t noticed the rich orange around the eye of a White-throated Tree Creeper before. Since the blog was published, Carol Probets who often lets me know what’s what informed me that this is a Red-browed Tree Creeper. See Carols blog at Lyreades
white throated tree creeper_named_raspberry lookout_july 2017

The Welcome Swallow was ignoring me as he sat on the old bridge watching the workings building the new one.
welcome swallow_named_grafton_july 2017

The Spotted Pardalote had a ritual of checking out the verandah every morning for snacks.
spotted paradalote_verandah_named_home_july 2017

The Grey Shrike-Thrush have set up home at my besties.
grey shrike thrush_named_binna burra july 2017

Adorable looking birds aren’t they?
grey shrike thrush_close_named_binna burra july 2017

The Grey Fantail was a bit puffed up in the cool afternoon breeze.
grey fantail_named_binna burra_july 2017

Another regular Winter visitor to my place are the Noisy Friarbirds. Their calls resound through the forest all day long. These two were having an in depth conversation.
friarbirds_named_home_july 2017

Every now and then a large flock of Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos descend on the pine trees to feed and then take off to find a place to roost.
yellow tailed black cockatoo_named_binna burra_july 2017

The lovely little Rose Robins are occasional visitors. So cute as the bounce in the garden looking for snacks.
rose robin_named_home_july 2017

This is excitement number one. First time I have seen a Grey Goshawk. It was high in the trees at my besties place.
grey goshawk_named_binna burra_july 2017

Excitement number two. The first time I have seen a Fan-tailed Cuckoo. It was so happy to sit on a post and pose for a minute or two at my besties place.
fan tailed cuckoo_named_binna burra_july 2017

This was the sunset in some of the photos mentioned before. So it must be time to go.
sunset rip_named_binaa burra_july 2017

Thank you for stopping by. Drop me a note if you found something that interested you.

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Buildings

Being from Australia, I guess it was about time I used the Sydney Opera House in a blog challenge juxtaposed with an old shed from near my place in the country.

The Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge on a stormy day.

170609_blog challenge_buildings_sydney opera house

The old shed and the cow
170609_blog challenge_buildings_shed and cow

Black-&-White-Banner

Have a look at the other photographers contributions to Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Buildings

 

House Sitting, the Horse, the Cow and the Garden

It was a hot summer….almost too hot to be living in a caravan, which was thankfully under these huge Iron Barks which cast shade over a fair bit of the ground…. unfortunately the setting sun blazed onto the least protected side.

But that has nothing to do with what I was thinking about was it…..a downside of the caravan being under the Iron Barks was that the flying foxes loved the nectar from the flowers….interesting fact number 329:- flying foxes can shit whilst flying….seemingly, and especially on caravans in the bush.

Yes I know……the caravan was on a friend’s place while I was looking for somewhere to live and they had taken off for a holiday. While I was there, I started a vege garden, plus other gardens ‘cos thats what I did….always make a garden if I’m staying somewhere for a bit. Especially veges ‘cos its one thing you don’t have to spend money on….Nannas “lessons” in being thrifty somehow emerged from the weirdly assorted filing system my head seems to possess….plus hanging in the garden with Pop hearing all sorts of stories….like the dangers of worms….once they latch on….phew…..over the other side of the house yard, beyond the windrow, was some good soil to start the vege garden.

The soil was a bit sandy….with a bit of feeding and a good talking to, the vege garden started to come on quite well.

Now the vege garden was a bit vulnerable to the house cow…..a very hippy….at least dairy farmers will know what I mean and those from the 60’s and 70’s will have to think anatomy….hippy with a nice disposition, large eyed, huge lashes softly spoken Jersey. One of those cows where you just have to walk into the paddock with a bucket and stool, milk, give her a bit of a pat and walk back without so much of a fuss….can’t think of her name….oh yeah, that one was Jugs….interesting fact number 583:- don’t get a 16 year old boy to name any animal.

One day, I had to move Jugs into the paddock that had some good feed in it…..it was the paddock that adjoins the house yard close to the bit of space where I dug a vege patch. I know what you are thinking already, but I am smarter than a cow and had the fence in good order….in fact there was another small fence around the vege garden to keep out the smaller stuff like possums and rabbits. With that task done, a nice cuppa was in order.

I went back to the caravan, which was heating up in the summer sun…..actually what I did was open up the whole of the canvas annex to try and catch a breeze or two. I built a low wall and frame and made the wall of the annex into a roof so the annex size was doubled and then insect screened the opening. Sitting at the table having a cuppa and doing the crossword puzzle in the Post…Mr Wisdoms Whopper….when I noticed that the horse….oh yeah the owners also had a horse. Seemed to have some fancy idea of saddling up and riding out to check the back 40 or down to the dam out the front and riding into the water after a warm day of riding around…..the horse, it appeared, had other ideas of what a nice day on the property meant. You know those horses…you walk towards the fence with a carrot and at once, the horse comes trotting toward you ready to have a snack, a bit of a rub down and the halter fitted.

Well…that wasn’t this horse…….this horse was just cantankerous, nasty and mean…if you ever got close to it, you got a case of “what the hell am I doings” as a bite or a kick was most likely the outcome of a close encounter. This horse was smart….almost too smart…..and no I can’t remember its name…..something like Prince.

Well I saw this horse walk down the fence line…..had another sip of my tea…..pen poised above 5 Down, when the mental picture of the horse became clearer and yes the fence wires were on the other side of the horse!!!

Interesting fact number 211:- a small rabbit fence is no match for a very large horse with a bad attitude……so there you go it wasn’t the cow who munched in the vege garden….the beans took the biggest hit before my “coaxing” had him galloping back down the track to where he managed to get in……an open gate……now I am sure I latched the gate…..OK I am exaggerating the term gate….it was a Queensland gate….loose wires and a stick with a loop on the post to fasten the stick, tightening the wires. The horse just stood there with its evil eye watching while I picked up the gate, refastened it, making sure the bottom of the stick was in the wire loop on the bottom of the post and top loop was tight……I headed back to the caravan and my cuppa.

It was all of five minutes before I saw the horse trotting back down the fence line…..but at least this time, I was still outside, near the clothesline…..have you ever built one of those old-fashioned clothes lines…the posts in the ground and a moveable cross-bar with a prop to hold the wires up when there is heavy stuff on the line…..I love building stuff…..that probably comes from my other grandfather who was a wheel wright….it’s in the genes I guess.

Well as you can imagine I was off in a flash to head off Steven or whatever its name was from getting back into the vege garden….this time he saw the error of his way and turned around and cantered down the track, through the open gate….wait….the open gate….hmmm something isn’t quite right. I refastened the gate and walked back down the track a little way, stopped and hid behind a tree…..don’t think that was an Iron Bark though…more likely to be a Spotted Gum…..well who should walk to the gate but Roger who proceeded to nudge the wire loop with his nose…..I just walked up to the gate and the horse, who didn’t seem to know I was approaching, such was his intent on opening the gate…..this is the only time I have punched a horse….no not a solid whack ‘cos a horses head is rather hard….just enough to release my frustration and to scare the bejesus out of the horse…..now the gate had an added bit of wire to keep it shut…..you have to be inventive don’t you?

A few days later, further into the hot summer, the corn was now looming large with ears that looked very yummy….the silks blowing in the afternoon breeze while I watered and picked off the bugs that were trying to get a free snack…..an ideal scene…..a very tempting scene you think?

During the night, I wandered out of the caravan and down to the dunny…….it was almost a classic out doors dunny….tin sides and an old real dunny door with a wooden seat on a tin….and in the moonlight could make out the shape…..something big down the house yard beyond the windrow and in the vege garden…….JUGS!! I shouted but her intention was obvious…..eat as much corn as possible.

The fence was no longer rabbit proof, other vegetables were either tasted or stomped as this lovely cow, raising her head with a stalk of my corn hanging from her mouth and huge soft brown eyes looking with as much innocence as she could muster, Jugs then went back to her task at hand.

Again, a bit of gentle coaxing….Jugs was a sucker for a bucket of hay and grain…..I had her on her way down the track and back into the front paddock with a now grumpier than ever horse.

Morning saw the extent of the damage……a tomato or two survived as did most of the autumn seedlings….and I had a meal or two of corn.

Interesting fact number 478:- Make a vege garden and they will come!!