Success and Failure: Two Sunday Projects

This morning I set out to see how the flowers and insects are doing here at the Hermits’ Rest. I needed some Nature Time and wanted to see if I could locate and dwarf blue-eyed grass, winecups, or Texas baby blue eyes. I knew they should be up by now.

At first I just found old friends and tiny wasps.

I enjoyed walking on our property all the way to the creek and back. The bluebonnets and paintbrush plants are going to seed, but there’s lots of other plants to see.

Lots to choose from

It seemed like almost every flower had an insect or two getting nectar or pollen (or eating it). It was a lot of fun to observe and later to try to identify what I saw.

I was interested in seeing what’s new, and sure enough, I eventually found all the plants I sought. The little blue eyed grass was easy to find along the driveway, now that it’s dried up a little.

Here it is!

Winecups were hiding in my horse playground, but a new patch appeared near the chicken house. This flower also hosted many insects.

The Texas baby blue eyes were harder to find, since my old patch got plowed over last year. But, when I was gazing at the far end of Walker’s Creek, I looked on the shore, and there they were. Later I finally saw some in our woods. I love these flowers, because they were my introduction to Texas wildflowers when I saw them at McKinney Falls State Park the first spring I was here.

I was happy I found the flowers I wanted. There were also SO many butterflies, many of which I photographed. Not shown are the variegated fritillary, spicewood swallowtail, and tiny sulphur.

I found a lot of new or interesting bugs and plants, especially when I took my friends Anita and Martha out to look at plants while Easter dinner was cooking. Here are highlights.

It really was a great plant day, and I really enjoyed sharing observations with friends. I left my phone in the car when I went over to Sara’s to get some leafy greens, but we had the best time just observing the flowers and insects in the pasture next to her house. There was so much clover in the field that we stood there blissfully inhaling its spicy scent. Ahh.

Spot the butterflies! Inhale!

I made the pak choi she gave me into a delicious side dish (mostly Kathleen did it), so that was FRESH.

Anyway, the time with friends was so nice, as the afternoon sun made the people, the dogs, and the flowers grow.

So, What’s the Failure?

Well…I had this nutty idea that I was going to ride the horses today, or else! I guess “else” ensued.

We’re innocent

First I got my precious boy, Droodles. I quickly realized that he resembled a chocolate-covered Easter treat. There was a dried layer of clay mud over much of his surface area.

I figured I’d just curry comb it out. Nope. I did get a lot off but I could tell it hurt him and was pulling out hair. I tried to get mud out of his tail, and hairs broke off. Oops. I realized I would not be saddling him. So I rinsed him off, but he was not thrilled. At least much mud got out of his mane and tail.

Somewhat better.

So, Plan B was to at least do some ground work. We did get some done, but when he slipped hard jumping, I ended that. I sure didn’t need to get him hurt. So he went into a pen to await his food. What did he immediately do? He rolled. At least it was in dry dirt.

Nope. Not gonna groom that quite yet, either.

I tried to get Apache in to groom, but after nearly hurting myself and losing both shoes in the mud, I gave up. I didn’t want me (myself?) or a horse hurt. Better miss your project goal than injure humans or livestock!

I enjoyed my grass on the eroded pond dirt.

At least dinner was good. Rice cooker jambalaya to feed seven! And the pak choi in sesame oil, plus a great salad from Martha and Chardonnay from Anita. I think the men liked it! No time for photos, because we ate it!

Author: Sue Ann (Suna) Kendall

The person behind The Hermits' Rest blog and many others. I'm a certified Texas Master Naturalist and love the nature of Milam County. I manage technical writers in Austin, help with Hearts Homes and Hands, a personal assistance service, in Cameron, and serve on three nonprofit boards. You may know me from La Leche League, knitting, iNaturalist, or Facebook. I'm interested in ALL of you!

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