Sunday, September 29, 2013

Words Not Necessary

A great day to be out and about! Here are some photos I took this morning and then I enjoyed swimming in the indoor pool later. Ice cream and cake for supper. YES! Great day.

I have never seen a purple double Angel Trumpet!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Pindo Palm

This is a beautiful cold hardy palm that is very easy to grow. It is also drought tolerant, inexpensive and readily available at nurseries and discount stores. Like many palms, the pindo produces an elaborate flowering structure called an inflorescence - the orange fruit forms on these structures after the female flowers have been pollinated. In the deep south, a jelly is made from these fruits. They have a terrific taste that starts out like apple and transforms to tart tropical flavors as it tantalizes the tongue. Too bad the fruit has a large seed and stringy fibrous flesh or we would eat them by the handful!
This palm produces a large quantity of fruit, which can be a nuisance, as ripening fruit attracts wasps and other insects. Remove flowers to avoid messy cleanups. The pindo fruits are rather tasty, but you probably don't need 50 pounds of them!
This is particularly nice bunch of pindo palm dates. The cluster is being supported in an upright position by an adjacent leaf stem showing the fruit off to full advantage. Typically the heavy clusters droop and hang downward against the trunk.

And then the mess!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Hooked by a Flower

I am completely amazed at how this flower opens and its delicacy. This is the 3rd day from when I first saw the bud. There are more openings to happen. I shall be back. I must visit the beach now.

Swan Visit

I am very angry when I see the campers throwing bread and other stuff to the swans, geese and ducks here. They are not supposed to but they think it is a 'cute' thing to see them come and cluster around, squawking and begging.  There is enough natural vegetation to sustain them, and their health may suffer due to all of the white bread and other things they are fed. These folks must be made to understand that these are wild birds and not a petting zoo. I have seen a goose attack a small child when she was feeding it, reaching out her hand holding a chunk of something and then pulling it back. It's so frustrating but I am too hesitant to say a word, though I sure would like to educate them all. (You never know how people will accept positive criticism so I keep quiet, coward that I am.)

Foods That are Poisonous to Swans and Other Birds

CHOCOLATE is harmful and can be fatal to birds. Chocolate poisoning first affects a bird's digestive system, causing vomiting and diarrhea. As the condition worsens, the bird's central nervous system is affected, resulting in seizures and eventually death.

Salt: While all living beings need regulated amounts of sodium in their systems, salt can lead to a host of health problems in birds, including excessive thirst, dehydration, kidney dysfunction, and death. Avoid feeding them any foods with added salt.
Apple Seeds: They contain trace amounts of Cyanide. While the fruit of the apple is fine for birds, be aware that in addition to the poisonous seeds, there may be pesticides present on the fruit's skin. Be sure to thoroughly cleanse and core any apple pieces to avoid exposure to these toxins.
Onions cause vomiting, diarrhea, and a host of other digestive problems. It has been found that prolonged exposure can lead to a blood condition called hemolytic anemia, which is followed by respiratory distress and eventual death.
Dried beans: Uncooked beans contain a poison called hemaglutin that’s very toxic to birds.

Avocados cause cardiac distress and heart failure.

Mushrooms cause digestive upset, and caps and stems of some varieties induce liver failure.

Caffeine and alcohol cause cardiac malfunction.

Tomato leaves (related to the nightshades), stems, vines & leaves are highly toxic to birds.


Well, I have a swan friend that comes to me and she doesn't even beg. She knows I don't feed her and she comes to me every time I stop at the edge of the bay. She definitely is the same swan because she has an unique mark on her right wing with which I'm familiar. I just talk to her and 'click' with both my tongue and camera.  
Here she comes.....

Heading straight to me.....

She looks toward another friend who approaches.....

And then comes to me.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

A Flowering I Shall Go.....

One of my most favored activities here in this large campground is hunting for and finding and taking photos of flowers. Oh! -  and bushes and trees and wildlife. 

I ride throughout the premises on my old golf cart with my camera and everyone knows by now, or should, that I am only looking for something to take home with me in my camera. I'm a flower stalker and snatcher, and harmless. 

The outdoor pool has had it's last dip by me yesterday. Even though the sun is still strong, the nights are cooling down as is the water in that pool.  There is an indoor pool and I hear it is now heated so it will be my main choice for exercise and conversations throughout next month before we return to winter wonders.  The ocean water is currently 79° but last week it was 84° and isn't an option for me as the waves knock me over and I can't get up!

The plants in the outdoor pool area are dying and looking scraggly, but I did find this spider flower, yesterday as a bud and today as a partial bloom.


Monday, September 23, 2013

Photo Mishmash...

I went back today and took a photo of the leaves of the Texas Star Hibiscus. There were a few dried pods, with many more to come. No one was home so I plucked two. There are many seeds in each of the five compartments and I'll try to start some next year. 

Click on photo to view larger.

A friend just sent me a photo of one of the jellyfish that washed up here on 'our' beach today. 

She says it was as large as a salad plate.

Well, that's it for today. Running short on time as I've been out and about and must now become Suzy Homemaker for a bit.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Pretty Flower Identified

The other day I saw two lovely flowers in full bloom in front of one of the permanent resident's homes here in the campground. They stood tall in their clay pots and there were several other pots with the same leaves with only buds evident at the top of their stems.

The leaves looked quite a bit like marijuana leaves - yes, I know what they look like. The flowers were a bright red shade with a white star at their centers and a hibiscus-like stigma.

No one was home so I took a couple of pictures. I wanted to know this plant's name. I tried to identify it but couldn't. This morning I rode by again, in my golf cart, camera again in hand. The lady of the house  was out and was tending to some of her other plantings. I stopped, introduced myself and asked her if she would be able to tell me the name of the ones I pointed to. She said, "Why yes, they are a Texas Dahlia." I thanked her and went home to recheck my research findings. NO! They are not a Texas Dahlia.

Texas was the key word and I searched again and found it.

BUT.....I found out they have several names, one being Texas Star.
Here are the other names for this flower:

Texas Five Star Hibiscus
Swamp Hibiscus
Texas Star
Scarlet Rose Mallow
Scarlet Hibiscus

No wonder I had difficulty, eh?

Century Plant 10pm

Agave Plant Video I Made