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Sunday
Aug212016

A Few August Images, 2016

The steamy weather of the last couple of weeks has been so oppressive, I have hardly been able to force myself outside. Instead, I have been doing some painting inside the house. I know that cooler days with fresh breezes are coming, but meanwhile I am in the doldrums as far as gardening goes. Nevertheless, I have few August images to share from various places:

First, I spent nearly an hour outside trying to get a photo of a hummingbird. We have many coming through to visit our flowers and hummingbird feeder next to the patio, but my reflexes were too slow. Wilted and a bit discouraged, I at last managed one image with a recognizable bird:

Here is the view toward my front garden through the jasmine arch. We have had plenty of rain, so everthing is lush and very green:

Nothing like a wagonload of sweet watermelons to make the hot weather more bearable:

The watermelons were a special treat as part of a Master Gardeners class I am taking.

How about a basket of muscadines (Vitis rotundifolia) or scuppernongs? Sometimes people want to know the difference between a scuppernong and a muscadine.  A scuppernong is merely a green or bronze form of muscadine, which is a native grape of the South. They tend to have tough skins, but bite into one of these for a juicy, sweet-tart explosion of flavor in your mouth:muscadines
Muscadines on the vine at the Chilton County Research and Extension Service.

scuppernongs

We have muscadines growing wild on our property.We once had a black lab named Jasmine who loved to eat muscadines, especially the shriveled, somewhat fermented ones she found on the ground. I prefer them plump and recently picked. 

This butterfly has tattered wings but is still beautiful:

Check out this great-looking rain barrel, located at the Chilton County Extension Service Demonstration Garden:

A very interesting arbor at the Demonstration Garden is made from rebar, chicken wire, and rusty old garden tools:

Finally, I recently attended a cookout in honor of the volunteers at Aldridge Gardens. We were eating under a large pavillion when a funny thing happened. We noticed rain coming down on one side of the pavilion while on the other side of the pavillion the sun was shining in and there was no rain! We all laughed, but this is typical of the scattered showers that are so common in August. After the rain we had a special surprise when a rainbow arched over the Gardens:

Blessings to you all!   Deb

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Reader Comments (15)

Hi Deb, I have never heard about muscadines nor scuppernongs before! I am surprised that your dogs loved to eat the muscadines, since I thought that grapes are poisonous to dogs. When I accidentally drop a grape in the kitchen, my dogs make a beeline around it. They instinctively seem to know that this wouldn't sit well with their stomach.
Living in the bone dry Southern California, I just love the photos of your lush and green garden. Green feels so soothing to me. I can't wait until temperatures will come down here...
Wishing you a great week!
Warmly,
Christina

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

Your rain story made me smile as rain often misses our property by just a few hundred yards! I've never heard of either of the fruits you mention; they look delicious. The view through the arch is a winner every time.

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

Your summer images are refreshing Deb. Especially the watermelon and your lush green front garden. You managed to get a nice action photo of the hummingbird. Your persistence paid off!

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDenise

Hummingbirds can be so uncooperative! You got great shots of the butterfly and rainbow, neither of which is an easy catch in my book. I love that rusty metal arbor and one of my rain barrels could use a paint job like that to prevent the sun from promoting algae growth (but I'd have to skip the frogs as my painting skills are limited to slapping color on a surface).

I hope the heat breaks soon out your way, Deb!

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKris P

I can imagine those wild grapes would make good juice.
We've been enjoying kumquats - also an acquired taste!

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDiana Studer

LOVE scuppernongs. The best grapes, IMHO.

You're so lucky to have them growing wild on your property!!

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAaron Dalton

Thanks Deb for visiting my blog :-) I am curious, that Hummingbird looks like a female to me but they don't have red throat spots, I thought?
I love your overgrown arch and your beautiful walk way!

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterGone Tropical

Hi everyone, thanks for visiting and taking time to comment! I appreciate each one of you.

Gone Tropical, that is a male hummingbird. It looks like he is fairly young with his throat just turning red. Very young males look much like females until they begin to mature.

Have a great week! Deb

August 22, 2016 | Registered CommenterDeborah Elliott

Thanks Deb, makes sense now, a young Hummer-boy, so cute! :-)

August 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterGone Tropical

I've had a good excuse for avoiding the oppressive heat. The stress of a friend's death (same age) and mowing the entire 2 acres, had my allergies attacking me and I've been down for 3 weeks (mostly because I can't always get my doctor to agree to a treatment plan that WORKS!). Love your jasmine arch.

August 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLinda

I'm with you Deb, this summer was so hot and steamy that I did very little gardening. But the last few days have been so pleasant, and now it's time to get back to work. I do love your jasmine arch in particular. I agree, it's nearly impossible to get a decent photo of those hummingbirds. How do the pros do it? I know they'd have a tripod and a fast shutter speed, but the fast shutter speed would mean bright light, and that doesn't lend itself to great photos. I'm baffled.

August 23, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

The garden is such a special place, especially as fall starts to arrive...Your photos are great fun.

August 24, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie@Seattle Trekker

Your summer images are beautiful Deb and I enjoyed the rain story. The rainbow is such a special treat. Our summer has been hot and steamy as well. Ever since the end of July the temperatures have been trying to get out of the 90's and it has been very dry. I never thought I would get so excited to hear the rumble of thunder in the background and want to do a rain dance!

Hi Deb! I love your jasmine arch and the view! Very classy!
Laughed reading about your dog... And learned two new words: scuppernong and muscadine.
Thank you!

August 27, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterTatyana@MySecretGarden

That jasmine arch is wonderful. I am familiar with muscadines but have never heard of scuppernongs. Good to have one's horizons widened. Is there a more perfect fruit for summer than watermelon?

August 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJason

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