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Category Archives: The land


Every Southern landscape requires mimosa. We were late in acquiring it, because such old-fashioned items are not always easy to find. Plus, the first effort to get one started failed. But this mimosa, which was planted just last fall, is blooming for the first time. It’s in a chicken-wire cage to protect it from the […]

Like sandpaper

If only I had a video camera with a nice, long lens, it would be obvious what the squirrel was up to. In ordinary photos, it requires explaining. The squirrel was sliding along the railing, scratching its tummy. From the looks of its tummy, it hasn’t been going hungry, thanks to my peach trees. The […]

The new fawns

What’s the first stop for deer-mothers introducing their fawns to the world? The abbey’s yard, apparently. This one’s legs were still wobbly.

Yesterday’s fawns

So far in May, more than 8 inches of rain has fallen. There should be plenty for the deer to eat in the woods, but there they are in the yard again. They’d just better stay away from the day lilies.

The perils of peaches

It’s year eight in the orchard, and this year I just might get my first bite of peach. Last year, the entire peach crop was wiped out by a late frost. This year, the three peach trees are loaded. One of the trees is weeks ahead of the other two trees and has dozens of […]

Eight years down, a hundred years to go

Review: Husqvarna weed-eater on wheels

Eight years ago, after I cleared an acre of elderly pine trees for the abbey and had the stumps removed, it was hard to imagine ever having a weed problem. It was all bare red dirt, scary to look at. I was eager for anything — anything — to grow. Now there are weeds, and […]

They grow up so fast

The spring chickens have two basic emotional states — semi-boredom (when they’re in the chicken house), and deliriously happy (when they’re outdoors). Here they’re taking a communal dirt bath in the garden.

Hoping for a peach crop

The peach trees in the abbey’s orchard are loaded with young peaches this year. Last year, the entire crop was killed by a late frost. One of our friends who is a retired agricultural extension agent says that, unless you spray, you don’t get peaches. All sorts of insects prey on peaches, including fruit moths […]


⬆︎ Baby apples Drought is terrifying at any time of year. But drought in the spring, I think, is the worst. After a so-so start with the spring rains, a weekend front left behind 5.54 inches, and yesterday the sun came out. Now we can have some serious spring. One of the things that is […]