|The seeds for this spectacular display of sunflowers came as a Christmas|
present from my niece, Callie, who lives in Kansas City, Kansas.
The sunflower is Kansas' State Flower
BEing a quarter of a century student of the dynamic system known as the Enneagram provides me with a map for the internal terrain (how one negotiates life without this map is a mystery to me). This map assists with identifying one's story line and its consequences. Another tool is Louise L. Hay's Heal Your Body in which she provides suggested new thought patterns for maintaining a healthy body.
The idea of consequences, intended and otherwise evolved from my personal internal discussion with myself about our decreasing duck flock. Early this Spring I decided to "sheet mulch" (a Permaculture practice which I have used often here at MuRefuge) with cardboard, old worn out natural fiber clothes and wood chip the septic mound in the ducks' area. Unfortunately this practice, along with the lack of rain since last December, has provided the just right environment for Aspergillus to flourish. The small Indian Runner flock that also calls MuRefuge home forages amidst the wood chips where, where a plethora of Aspergillus organisms grow. As the mulch progressively covered more area, one of the oldest ducks and another of the next older ones died from this organism affecting their respiratory system. Then recently one of the two youngest ducks began having significant breathing problems, most strikingly noted by her severe sternal retraction with each inspiration. I freaked out: "I am killing my ducks." Now what? No more covering massive areas in the duck yard with wood chips! The remaining wood chip pile on the driveway will be delivered to areas where the ducks do not forage. And perhaps it is time, after 20 years of this activity, to let go of accumulating wood chips for dispersal onto the land occupied by MuRefuge.
Back to the ill duck: I identified flower essences (Self Heal and YES, aka Yarrow Environmental Solution) to support her healing. The good news is she back with her flock foraging and exhibiting normal breathing.
Vickie, my extraordinaire weeder, and I have been getting rid of invasive grasses on the entire property. This practice has been going on for several years now. Quite large areas of bare dirt now exist, many in the ducks' area. My practice in previous years has been to start native grass seeds in Todd planters, then once they sprouted, to plant them out in the areas mulched with wood chips. This coming rainy season they will be planted directly into the dirt.
|12 Todd planters, each with 32 cells, have been scattered|
with native bunch grass seed: 2 planters of June grass
and Blue Wildrye grass, and 10 with Idaho fescue.
|These Stinging nettles in bloom give one an idea of|
the massive volume of seeds produced by what some
call a weed. My belief is one can not have
enough Stinging nettles in the Spring
when the young leaves can be made into a tasty soup.
|Davis Showy Milkweed in bloom.|
This plant is caterpillar food for the Monarch.