Hay Raking

Local Amish youth using the draft horses to rake hay.

Mountain Laurel Time

The state flower for Pennsylvania is in bloom now.  More information on the selection of the mountain laurel for the state flower, which is a blooming shrub rather than a typical flower, can be found here. I just enjoy the brief season with the pale pink blooms showing up along the country roads.

In Praise of Greenhouses

My favorite place to visit from now until late fall is  Black Creek Greenhouse. It is owned and operated operated by a Mennonite family and was started in 1980. It has a wonderful selection of all types of plants, plus you can also pick up some locally grown produce and farm fresh eggs. Customers use a…

Closer Look

This is a close-up of a bearded iris blooming in the yard (Germanica Hemstitched). The nice thing about a macro lens is that you see things you never noticed before such as the fluffy “hairs” and the inner part of the bloom.  It is a reminder to be a closer and more thoughtful observer of the wonderfully diverse…

Spring Planting with Mule Power

It is time for spring plowing and planting. This is an Old Order Mennonite farmer with a team of five mules working his field. There are two different “horse and buggy” groups who live in this area — Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonite. They differ in their dress and customs but share many practices such…

Hidden in the Woods

The pink ladyslippers are making their annual appearance in the woods. Due to all of the downed limbs and trees from the October snowstorm, we do not have as many this year. But if you look closely and are careful of where you step you can still find groupings of the delicate pale pink member…

Hazy with a Chance of Farms

As a complete newbie when it comes to photography, I learn something new each time I head out to take some photos. I spent an hour driving around this afternoon making photos of some of the local farms. I was wanting to capture all of the various shades of green at this time of the year….

A New Perspective

I invested (“invest” sounds so much more responsible than I spent money on something I wanted but did not really need) in a macro lens for the camera today–40mm 2.8. Came home and, without reading any of the directions, put the lens on the camera and headed outside. Since we have an early spring, I have both…

Landscaping with the Word

In simple humility, let our gardener, God, landscape you with the Word, making a salvation-garden of your life. James 1: 21 (The Message)

The Promise of Peaches to Come

The peach trees are blooming at the local orchard with the promise of sweet, juicy peaches for the summer. The strange weather this year does not seem to have damaged the apples nor the peaches. While peaches are usually associated with Georgia or South Carolina, there are many peach orchards in southeastern and central Pennsylvania. We are…

Find the White Throat

Even though it is officially spring, we have a few of our “winter” birds still taking advantage of the bird seed. There are a some dark-eyed juncos and I saw this white throated sparrow today hopping among the spring flowers and weeds (Look in the back in front of the boulder). They will  leave soon for their summer…

Turkeys are Back

Two wild turkeys came wandering in the backyard today pecking at the stray bird seed on the ground. We have not seen the turkeys since last fall when we had groups of 20-30 roaming the yard regularly. One year on Thanksgiving day we had 30 turkeys in the yard, however we were satisfied with store-bought turkey rather than…

Shark Teeth and Wild Onions

Once again it is spring and I am digging up the wild onions in the flower beds and yard.  I know wild onions have their beneficial uses but they always grow where you don’t want them to grow and they grow in such profuse numbers. It seems that as soon as I pull one up, another rises in its…

Welcome Spring

Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Hebrews 10:24 Sightings of spring and the promise of more to come.

Flowers and Phoebes

You know that spring is arriving in our area when you hear the call of the Eastern Phoebe in the early morning. The phoebe is a small gray flycatcher and usually arrives in the early spring. According to local folklore, it is time to buy the Easter ham when you hear the phoebe. However, this year…