Goober Pea*

I recently removed some elderly hedges that were at the end of their life expectancy. After cutting down the five foot bushes I spent a couple days chopping and digging up the roots. I smoothed out the soil and covered my new planting bed with mulch while trying to decide what should go there.

This week, I walked out my front door and was greeted with a couple pops of green. My first thought was that somehow I missed a few persistent roots. Upon closer inspection I discovered that I am now a peanut farmer.

I already know who the culprits are, my noisy local flock of Blue Jays (Cyanocitta cristata). I don’t know anything about growing peanuts but I’m about to find out.

I figure if it’s good enough for a couple of our former Presidents (Jefferson and Carter) then it’s good enough for me! If all goes well, in four months the jays should get a 4000% return on their investment.

*Brought from Africa during the slave trade these legumes were originally called goober peas (derived from nguba, a Congolese word).

Such a Deal

In my ongoing effort to be careful with my money I stopped into a dollar store and picked up some new shoelaces. It was too good to be true and now I know why. And yes, I discovered this issue right before work so I had to watch my step that night.

Maybe I should get a cat…*

*When I had cats they eschewed all purchased cat toys in favor of household “trash”. Items like crumpled newspaper, paper bags, old shoelaces (and, of course, boxes of any size) were the toys of choice.

Star of the Day

Hit a favorite fishing hole Sunday afternoon for a little relaxation. It was a very mellow outing, the fish decided not to bite until just before sundown (which is right when all the nasty bugs come out for a bite as well). We only caught a few Hardhead Catfish, not really edible but fun to pull in.

It doesn’t matter to me if I catch anything, I just enjoy being out in the fresh air and sunshine. Plus, I get to watch all the wildlife. A sleepy Red-breasted Merganser was the most unusual of the nearby birds. While I know they winter around here I don’t often see them.

But the highlight of the day was this smallish sea star (Echinaster sp.). Unlike the rocky coastline in the Pacific Northwest where I regularly spotted sea stars during low tide, I rarely encounter them here. This shallow, sandy coast offers less suitable habitat (there are offshore reefs but as of yet I haven’t explored those). It was a treat to watch this one shuffle among the rocks in an effort to stay under the outgoing tide.