a prickly distraction

okay, it appears thistle has sneaked its way onto my list of favorite STILL blog subjects.  other than the nuisance of trying to handle the dagger-sharp stems and occasionally trying to dig the prickles out of my foot, i find it otherwise irresistible: in fact, i am temporarily a dangerous highway driver, peering out the passenger window at whole embankments painted lavender by thistle season. this variety, with its diminutive flowerhead, is abundant right now in the wetland areas beside our dock just before the line where the cattails start to dominate.

creeping thistle (or canada thistle)

turtle lake, saint paul, minnesota

  • margie says:

    i am a big thistle fan myself. I especially love how something so prickly can produce the very softest thistle down

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the way of all flesh

we have some pin cherries in the back yard and the other day i saw one branch with leaves that had been variously infested with spindle galls. apparently harmless, but unnerving.

spindle galls on pin cherry leaves

st paul, mn

  • margie says:

    i always find those leaves fascinating

    reply
  • Michelle Hutchinson says:

    I love you photos, would love to havesome if them on my walls.

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three of a kind

i hope you will forgive the biological incorrectness of this photo for the chance it gives to show these three beautiful eggs together.

robin, cardinal, and turtle dove eggs

st paul, mn and jean-luc and nicole’s syrah vineyard, languedoc

  • Diane says:

    I’ll forgive, but wouldn’t that be a shock to the mother robin? Ha, ha

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internal structure

these unremarkable bulrushes turned suddenly compelling when sliced lenthwise. can’t you imagine how the lake water wicks up the spongy fibers of those interiors?

great bulrush stems split lengthwise

turtle lake, mn

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one child’s handful

our kids and their friends spend these long hot days down at the lake, finding anything they can think to do, as long as it takes place in the cool shallow water. minnow catching, inevitably, suggests itself. these were released quickly onto white paper, then gathered up and put back in their jar. i can’t vouch for their fate after that, but still blog, to my knowledge, did not harm them.

minnows

turtle lake, mn

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