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"Possibility and promise greet me each day as I walk out into my garden. My vigor is renewed when I breathe in the earthiness and feel the dirt between my fingers. My garden is a peaceful spot to refresh my soul." Meems

Welcome to my Central Florida Garden Blog where we garden combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly plants, and tropicals.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

noticing florida

there was a time in my life (pre-blogging days) when i would be out and about and disappointedly wish i had my camera with me for some moment of celebration or sighting of something i would otherwise have enjoyed capturing. i'm getting pretty good about keeping one with me all the time these days. my family gives me a little grief (or you might say a little rolling of the eyes) over this fact but they love me -- so for the most part -- they tolerate my newfound obsession.
these photos are not from my home but from places close by. ordinary places i go often or not so often. but while i'm there taking the time to pay attention; to look beyond the usual and to what nature presents right in front of me and capturing what i can.

taking advantage of our tourista weather a couple of days ago i met my daughter and her son at a playground close to her home (i also took oodles of photos of him). right next to the play area was a pond where i was able to photograph a great blue heron, a great egret, a snowy egret, and white ibis. while i was doing that i spotted this anhinga looking like a snake stretching its head beak first up out of the water and then completely submerging for seconds. i knew this is how they forage for meals but had never actually witnessed the process.

after a couple of dives it came up with a catch -- i guess it was an appetizer because it went right back to fishing. these are the birds that have to dry their wings before flying again when they've finished their meals.

a few minutes later these two sandhill cranes came swooping down to check out the ground for some dinner. even though these are a fairly common sight in this area, i never tire of seeing them fly overhead or the sound of their distinctly loud rattling call.

the rest of the photos are snaps that remind me of the season. it finally 'feels' like autumn has arrived in florida and it is truly glorious to be outdoors.

Florida Native Plant: American Beauty Berry Callicarpa americana
I have officially added this plant to my wishlist. The birds will enjoy this addition in my garden.

the fruit from an indian hawthorne bush from my daughter's yard. just when she didn't think she had anything in her yard worthy of a snap. here are a few more...

my 20 month old grandson is fascinated (more like obsessed) with acorns these days- he pronounces it A'torns. he's partial to the kajillion that have scattered to the ground, collecting them in his pudgy little hands until he has so many we transfer them to a bowl. i like the ones on the trees because they are a beautiful reminder of autumn.

giant clusters of queen palm seeds... first green (background) and then ripe amber... another reminder of our tropical florida autumn.

i hope you are enjoying all the signs of autumn wherever you are. what are some of things you love about autumn?


  1. I have hawthorne thingees in my yard?!?! I know I have ATORNS! What do I love about autumn? The smells (cinammon, spice, etc.), the cool air, and the hint of Christmas (which means family and good times) right around the corner.

  2. Me too MLM, it is the smells, the cool air and the hint of Christmas. My wife is so enthralled with the hint of Christmas she spent practically the entire weekend preparing the plans for her "Christmas Extravaganza", which means decorations. I even have a nice sketch to follow for decorating the house/yard. Don't know if I am to be excited by this or overwhelmed.;) The joy I can see that it brings her though certainly makes me happy. I just love seeing her smiling and excited. It makes me want to have as many decorations as possible.

    The other thing I love about Autumn of course is that it is a sign of the upcoming hunting season. On the first really cool mornings I get chill bumps knowing that I will soon be taking in the beauty of God's creation in a marsh somewhere.

  3. Meems, I am glad you stopped by my blog. There you can see some of the things I like about autumn.

    Like your grandson I like acorns. There is a big old oak tree at the park I frequent that has some huge acorns with prickly caps. Some years I collect them and display them in a bowl for fall decor. This year it has been too dry so I didn't find many acorns.

    I am pleased to have found your blog. I have often wondered how true Floridians see the changing of the seasons. I will keep an eye here for some insight.

  4. Cozy pants and cuddling

  5. mlm: i'm with you on the scents and the signs of the holidays coming soon.

    nt: can't wait to see your extravaganza... i love the decorating that comes with this season too.

    lisa: welcome. our season is much different than those north of us... green. always green, every season. :-)

    anon: ahhh... two things i like every season. :-)

  6. Great pictures. I do the same, I take my camera every where I go, unfortunate most of the time when I see a great picture I’m driving in my car.

  7. meems, your pictures of the birds just scream Florida! to me. You have so many long-legged beauties down there!
    It's always interesting to see the different shapes and colors of acorns from the different oak trees. The ones you show are much darker than ours.
    I have the beautyberry bush on my list to buy for next year! I saw it a couple of times this summer but passed it by, for some dumb reason. Not next year! They're gorgeous!
    I always have my camera with me, too. The times when I don't is when I wished I had it. You just never know when a photo op will present itself!

  8. Your pics are great! I'm a bit jealous of your cranes. We have a beauty berry at our back door and the birds love it. The mockingbird tries to guard it from all the other birde, but they sneak in whenever he looks the other way.

    I just love this time of year. But it's been too short this time around. I'm sitting up late making sure things don't freeze. Yep, our back door thermometer says 30 right now. Even scarier, the one out front says 25!!! Straight from the AC to the heater! YIKES!

  9. rusty: i know what you mean--my family is getting pretty used me asking if we can pull over... :-)

    kylee: i do love our long-legged varieties.

    sophie: you are so right about this time of year and this time too short. you'd think we would be used to it by now- switching a/c to heat overnight and vise versa- but even after all these years it seems strange. hope you fared okay last night with the freezing temps up your way. will that beauty berry freeze?


Have a blessed day,

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