blank feature image
six-late-winter-trees
details
little monsters

with a blanket of snow re-covering anything with any color in our landscape, i turned to my desk full of spare parts, and spent the afternoon making an assemblage of assemblages. six pretty little frankensteins.

six trees assembled from mid-april bits

vadnais lake, saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. tinajo says:

    Yikes – snow?! Enough with snow, we all deserve spring! :-)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
snow-striped-trunk
details
center stripes

the most recent “final snow of the year” rolled in from the north on thursday night. the next morning, when i looked northward toward the lake, all my tree trunks looked like tree trunks. when i looked southward, all the north facing tree trunks looked like divided highways with painted white median stripes down their centers.

snow painted tree trunk

saint paul, minnesota

comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
knobby-twigs
details
ash wednesday

i suppose this was an appropriate find on a wednesday during easter week. ash twigs are among my favorite winter branches; so nubby and textured. they look far from ashen, though. look at those terminal buds, swollen and ready to burst!

winter ash twigs

lake vadnais, saint paul, minnesota

comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
pale-winter-leaf
details
ghost of winter past

i pulled this anemic winter leaf from a vine this afternoon on my daily walk. i’m pretty sure it was a wild cucumber vine. the (lack of) color caught my attention. the leaf looked like i felt after this winter, a little damaged but still intact. as i was photographing the leaf two hours later, i thought to myself, “this will be my homage, my send off, to a long difficult winter. from here on out, i will focus only on spring and promise and renewal”. then i got in the car to pick up my son from school, and the weather report said ’70% chance of snow over the next two days.” i laughed. but anemically.

end of winter leaf

vadnais lake, saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. margie says:

    i love those end of winter leaves

  2. tara soucy says:

    The joke is on us, here in Maine, as well. I woke up to snow this morning that has obscured all the Spring clean-up from days before. Oh well…..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
winter-garden-seed-pods
details
deadhead

i was just square enough in college never to attend a grateful dead concert, which was an almost superhuman feat in madison wisconsin in the 1980s. today i cut some dried flowers from their stalks in our prairie, which is the closest i’ve been to a deadhead in quite a few years.

winter garden pruning, seedpods

saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. amazing. fascinating. unique. beautiful blog!!! visiting for the first time. hopped over from amy@four corners blog. will be back : )

  2. Kendra says:

    This really made me laugh for some reason! Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
rail-feather-mess
details
bird down

elegant black and tans.

feathers of a virginia rail

saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. margie says:

    what soft little lovelies

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

first-green
details
charming charlatan

i was hiking off-trail today, and was so excited when i stumbled on a fresh green carpet of  these charming corrugated rosettes. a magical harbinger of spring. i came home and started googling, and what i found was not magical at all: what i had stumbled on was the persistent winter growth of garlic mustard, or, as it is referred to by the minnesota department of agriculture: a class a noxious weed. in other words, the nifty retro checkerboard floors in my new mid-century basement had just revealed themselves to be made of a very useful material, called asbestos.

garlic mustard leaves

lake vadnais, saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. margie says:

    when we are craving green , ever noxious weeds look beautiful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
pussywillow-2
details
grabbing a fistful of spring

we in the upper midwest like to brag about our four distinct seasons: our summers of endless lakeside twilight, our russet autumns full of bonfires and long hikes, and our frigid, beautiful winters. but here’s the truth. we don’t get much spring. sandwiched between ice-out on the lakes and the first farm reports complaining about too much heat and too little rain, there is a strobe flash of pussy willows, red-winged blackbirds, daffodils, and lime-greeen tufts at the tips of balsam branches. and then it’s gone, and everything is green until september. so this morning, i decided to grab a fistful of spring before it disappeared.

pussy willow (willow catkins)

lake vadnais, saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. Traci says:

    so beautiful! this one reminds me of winter even though it’s about spring. here’s to spring.

  2. Emmanuelle says:

    It’s quite the same here in Montréal :o) except I rarely get to the river in the Spring, so I am happy for this occasion to admire pussy willow up close – and what a gorgeous picture!

    • Thank You Emmmanuelle! What a treat to have you visiting STILL.
      I was just talking to my husband about how I had heard that one definition of a “bio-region” was a shared watershed. That would mean that Minnesota sits on two bio-regions: the Mississippi river watershed, and the Great Lakes watershed. And Montreal, on the Saint Lawrence river, would be part of the Great Lakes watershed. So, in a way, that makes us neighbors :-) Nice to meet you!
      Mary Jo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
bittersweet-vine-2
details
i’m sorry, have we met before?

when i was at the universityof wisconsin-madison, this very good loooking guy introduced himself to me at the student union one sunny afternoon on the terrace. after 20 minutes of chit chat he revealed that we had been in the same physics class for a whole semester. and i had to admit i had never noticed him. it was an awkward moment.

that was how i felt today when i found this bittersweet vine. even though i was alone, i felt equally awkward. how in the world, after two plus years of doing still blog, with my eyes constantly peeled for anything interesting in my environment, could i have missed this?

american(?) bittersweet vine

lake vadnais, saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. margie says:

    maybe it was saving its introduction for the end of this endless winter we have had this year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

blank feature image
maple-seeds-and-stems
details
cycles

the stems that drop the seeds that sprout the trees that grow the branches that make the stems that drop the seeds that sprout the trees that grow the branches . . .

maple seed and stems

saint paul, minnesota

comments
  1. Tracy Klinesteker says:

    Isn’t it wonderful!

  2. Erica says:

    That would make a great textile design.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *