Monday, March 22, 2010

" ... how does your Garden grow?"

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row.

Daffodils - staying warm inside

We're happy here indoors, out of the rain (again!) and cold (still too chilly).

We're standing tall in a frog-in-a-vase that came from the Blooming Arts Festival.
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Old Time Radio Show in Linden

Dimples, on Main Street, performed an Old Time Radio Show-- Live-- for Linden's 2nd Annual Blooming Arts Festival (a spectacular kaleidoscope of fine arts, crafts, and performances).

Listen to excerpts from their show. Watch "backstage" to see the sound effects being created. 

They've produced a CD of their shows.

Spring arrives with Blooming Arts Festival

Big doings in the city!  

- Arts and crafts, music, food and more were all about the town square.  
- Music played at the Courthouse.  Live radio show was broadcast from "Dimples".  
- Artisans brought their wares for the citizenry and tourists to enjoy and buy.  
- A trolley bus came from Nashville to shuttle folks between Linden and Lobelville.  

Good times were had by all.

    Fire, glass, wood, molten metal, paint splatter, and modern dance! With an outstanding slate of educational events and interactive exhibitions, Linden's 2nd Annual Blooming Arts Festival was a spectacular kaleidoscope of fine arts, crafts, and performances.

    Well over 50 exhibiting artists presented items such as wood carved bowls, totem poles, hiking sticks, pottery, clay figures, stained glass, weavings, books, jewelry, baskets, quilts and painted feathers, portraits, photographs, paintings, dolls and gourds.

    Food was abundant and provided by local eateries and street vendors. Guided tours were available highlighting the new Linden Art District, the new Heritage and Visitor Center, and the Historic Commodore Hotel. Town Mayor Jim Azbill, was seen greeting visitors.

    Friday, March 19, 2010

    Rototilling the garden

    Every Spring the garden is prepared for the planting season. This is the time of year when we're not thinking of weeding, watering, and, yes, the work it takes to harvest all those crops. In our minds there are no rabbits, raccoons, deer or armadillos. We've ordered the seeds and are getting ready to get those cold-weather crop seedlings: lettuce, broccoli, cabbage-- to name a few.

    When it begins to turn warm, we anxiously wait for the garden to dry out enough to be able to rototill

    • If the ground is too damp we can get stuck in the mud. 
    • If we wait too long we miss out on the full growing season. The heat of the summer comes early in Tennessee. 
     Four-wheel drive helps, but it's not always enough. So it's an educated guess between jumping the gun and waiting longer than needed. This year we got lucky. Being on site, we could jump in at just the right time.

    "A labor of love" best describes this Rite of Spring. Hearing the growling, rumbly sound of the tractor's diesel engine is the music. Get a small taste for yourself from the video (click on "YouTube" to enjoy it from there).

    Thursday, March 18, 2010

    Daffodils bask in the sunshine after dawn

    Here's what we see this morning:

    • Dwarf daffodils in a row
    • Butterfly bushes - trimmed and newly mulched - waiting for summertime
    • Tractor, backed up to a cedar-tree pole, waiting to have its post-hold digger dismounted (it's behind the Garden Cottage, in front of the tiny red car)
    • Blue sky.  You can see it, thanks to Photoshop HDR ("High Dynamic Range")

    Skimming sun in the early morning

    The sun is skimming along the yard and the river.  Look carefully and you'll see

    • Bin of peat moss in the Tracker® from yesterday's planting of free trees from the Perry County Soil Conservation folks: 7 loblolly pines and 3 cherrybark oak trees.
    • Chair in the garden.  It is reserved for the horticultural Supervisor.  She's off-duty this early in the morning.
    • Some color is beginning to show in the large trees.  They know Spring is just around the corner.

    and then there was... Sunshine!

    These daffodils were overheard whispering to each other this morning:

    Wow! Feel the sunshine.  It's about time!  We struggled to poke up from the ground back when the humans were still wearing their long-johns.  We've been up here for the past several days, shivering in the crummy cold clammy cloudy weather.**

    But whistle a new tune today!  We're feeling warm and toasty.

    Do daffodils need suntan lotion?  Guess not, the sun's still not far enough north.
    Anyway, we're happy campers; hope you are, too.

    ** see Johnny Carson skit: "Clerra Clifford my cleaning lady saw Claude cooper from cleveland the kleptomaniac clopped my clean copper clappers kept in my closet and if i find him....I'll clobber him!"

    Saturday, March 13, 2010

    The River is rising

    The script for the video:
    Here's the River yesterday. Notice it's up to the bridge.

    This graph shows the River height (on the left)and the Flow, or speed of the water (on the right)
    The blue line is actual observations. The green line is the future forecast.
    The double lines are readings 30 hours later. They were added to show how more rain increased the river's flooding.

    A day later the River is already covering the bridge and the water is moving swiftly.

    Let's throw a log into the river and see how quickly the water carries it downstream.

    Recall the forecast says the river will continue to rise. The river could get much higher as it did last summer. Not a good time to go kayaking.

    Sunday, March 07, 2010

    Let's go for a kayak ride!

    (remember to click those 4 arrows at the bottom to see video in full screen)

    In less than 4 minutes:

    • Let's get a kayak from under the porch, 
    • drag it down to the River; 
    • climb aboard and 
    • paddle around. The other kayak is waiting for you.

    Bonus: the River in the early morning. The scenics are so different in the winter; in the summer everything is so green.

    [video created from a few clips; Canon SX120 on tripod]

    Saturday, March 06, 2010

    Birds chirp in the early morning

    (remember to click those 4 arrows at the bottom to see video in full screen)

    Early morning is a special time at the river. The birds are hungry and happy in the early-morning sunshine. Often, the River is calm.  This morning there's a clear late-winter blue sky.  We can see beyond the trees and,  especially, we can see the riverfront.  Already the birch trees' branches--  at the river's edge--are picking up some color; soon it will be spring.

    The video pans from the road, across the west yard and garden.  Then the River comes into view.  Look along the entire riverfront.  Listen for all the birds.  Finally, we're at the covered porch where we get to see a surprise.
    Come back again soon!