Sunday, June 10, 2018

Haying and a few flowers...

 The old equipment and the modern
 Prairie roses
 My shrub roses

Blue flax and yellow yarrow
(Achillea millefolium)
It's feeling more like summer every day.  The days are lengthening, flowers are blooming, the grass is growing, the temperatures are warming, and it's time to cut the hay.  What we gained in heavy winter snowfall, we sorely lacked in spring rains.  We only had .9" of rain in May and just received .9" this past week.  That means the alfalfa hay is flowering and the grass hay is heading and beginning to turn brown underneath and it's time to cut, although it's early for us.  We have to get it while the gettin's good.  Hubby started mowing hay on Thursday and the sons rolled up just nine bales today to see how it would go.  Tomorrow will be a bigger day and I think I'll be in the field raking while the sons bale and Hubby continues to mow.  The hay looks pretty good, and this little shot of rain might help to hold the other hay fields over until we get there. 
My flower beds are all a-bloom with flowers -- all volunteers from years past.  The rose bushes are really putting out and I've cut several bouquets to bring indoors and to share with my girls next door.  The rose scent is wonderful.  I put a vase of roses in our bedroom and was so pleased to walk in this afternoon after church and smell such a lovely fragrance.  The prairie roses are a very plain, single rose.  They are prolific this year and in full bloom now, but ever so quickly they will fade away. 
In one flower bed I had a little clump of chives growing and I thought they were so pretty that I just let them stay.  Now they have filled up a good corner and I like them so much that I will let them ramble.  I like it that they are useful as well as ornamental.  The columbine spread like crazy too.  I love them, but I must continually yank a lot of them out year by year or else they would take over every open spot of earth.  The poppy is a favorite who comes up with her large sticker-y leaves and stems and then goes all soft and silky in her rich, red bloom.  My peony is very close to blooming.  I can't wait!  I've been really babying her along with extra water and a bit of fertilizer since she didn't do anything last year with the dry, dry spring we had.  It looks like she's going to really put forth her all this year. 
We've had a pair of unusual visitors to our bird feeders -- the Red Crossbill.  I realize this one isn't very red (or orangy colored) but I'm thinking it's a female or perhaps a juvenile which have shades of yellow on them.  Crossbills are usually found where there is coniferous forest and we sure don't have any pine trees or any other cone trees around here, but they are helping themselves to the sunflower seeds and appear to be doing well.
I'm looking forward to climbing in my old, open-air tractor tomorrow and raking hay again.  It's mindless work that allows me to spend hours thinking my own thoughts,  praying for people, and singing to God as I roll along.   It's amazing how many songs come to mind when you make your own music.  I could put my ear buds in and listen to something, but I just never do.  I like taking in the smells, the sounds, and the scenery right where I am.  What are the smells and sounds and the sceneries  where you are today?



  1. I was just thinking about you and how you would be driving the tractor raking hay soon. I love all of your flowers and the birds you have are just amazing to me.
    I think its so nice to read your posts this morning. Have a lovely week. I hope you get tons of hay.

  2. Another interesting post about your life on the farm. The crossbill sounds as if it's enjoying the sunflower seeds even if far from its own habitat. It's not surprising that you sing praises to our Creator God as you see His creation all around you springing forth at this time of the year. Hay making reminds me of recent scenes of our neighbours doing the same in the field by our house in Italy. Cutting grass, turning it over etc has to be done on a suitable day whether it's on a big or a small scale. I hope all goes well with your haymaking.

  3. Love that columbine. So pretty. By now maybe you are done raking hay. Hope you get some more rain, soon. We are enjoying the fragrance of peonies right now and the birds are singing a lot. Hope you have a good week.

  4. Chives and Columbines sure can spread around. I've had 2 colours of Columbines this year that I have no idea where they might have come from but I really like them. One is pure white, the other completely yellow. Now that everything is blooming I'm cutting down or even pulling out a lot of the purple ones that are so prolific.

  5. Thanks for stopping by, friends. I appreciate your thoughts and hearing what's happening in your world. I spent 3 hours raking today, but it's just the very beginning. Lots of hours to come in the next few weeks.

  6. I wonder if your columbines would spread around here... Maybe you could collect a few seeds to send me, and I will try to start them, in pots first. :-) They are beautiful to me! But I know how it is, when a plant takes over all the time, you can't feel the same about it as when it is rare. I haven't seen that form of flower on a columbine ever!

    And your chives are splendid!! I am trying to get some chives going again, the way they used to in my former garden. At this point I only have them growing like weeds out of spaces between paver bricks, because the ones in the vegetable boxes got so horribly infested with aphids I had to take them out. :-(

  7. I agree with you about earbuds - they are not for me! I love to sing and hum, but mostly I like the quiet, or the soft hums of a house ... fans, A/C, things bubbling on the stove, dog paws pattering around. I don't want to block out all the sounds of life.
    I have the sounds of mowers and chickens and dogs. Mostly it's HOT here, and sticky. We are past the time of early blooms, so no more rosey smells for us :) All is lush and green, and as the afternoon develops all is still and sleepy.

  8. Raking hay sounds like fun. Every time I see a John Deere I think of my hubby and his love for tractors and all things farm-like. I once transplanted a wild rose to a partly shady spot by my porch and it really took off. We have white yarrow and red columbines in my neck-of-the-woods. Isn't it wonderful all the diversity God has created. And the little crossbills went out of their way to visit you! :)

  9. Oh, the prairie is so beautiful! Thank you for sharing your beauty, Jody!


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