Turtles all the way down

We haven’t seen many turtles lately, but within the last week we (or I) saw two on Fouche Gap Road. The first one was immobile but apparently trying to cross the road near the bottom of the mountain.

lowbackturtle

We stopped so that I could move it out of the road. At first, from a distance, I thought it was a snapping turtle because it seemed to have such a flat back. Up closer I realized it wasn’t a snapper. It was a full hand-span wide. I put it at the closer side of the road, but Leah and I both worried that it was going to head back out into the road after we left. Fortunately, there was no sign of it when we came back home.

Monday morning Zeke found another turtle closer to the top of the mountain.

turtlehoundZeke is a good turtle hound.

This one was safely in the weeds, so I didn’t bother him/her. Here’s a closer shot.

turtle2

Maybe two turtles doesn’t qualify as “turtles all the way down” but two within a few days is a lot for up here.

 

 

Sky full of waves

When I took the dogs outside for their morning walk around the house Monday, the sky was completely covered by waves.

wavyskyIt was like this from horizon to horizon. It was impossible to get the entire sky in the picture. I tried a panorama, but that didn’t work. By the time I took the dogs out for their long walk, the sky was almost entirely clear.

 

Interested in old barber shops?

Everyone knows there’s a Web site devoted to every possible subject. I learned a few days ago that there’s one devoted to old barber shops when the owner contacted me asking for permission to use some of the photos from my post about the Forrest Barber Shop. Of course I was happy to give him permission to use it, and he did. The site is an interesting glimpse into an old, nearly forgotten world.

Bees on the sumac

We have quite a lot of sumac shrubs around the mountain. There are several fairly large shrubs behind the house. They must be a bee’s dream, because every summer when the sumac blooms the bees swarm around them. I walk by one every time I take the dogs around the house. This is what it looked like a few days ago.

It seemed to have at least one of every kind of bee.

Our sumac produces creamy white flowers. There are some down on Huffaker Road that produce deep red flowers. One of our neighbors thinks sumac is poisonous, but this variety is not. The Wikiepedia article says that varieties with white drupes (fruit) are poisonous. I routinely pull small shoots out of the ground with my bare hands and have never had the kind of skin reaction that its relative poison ivy causes. According to that article, “true” Rhus species have red fruit. I don’t recall actually seeing red drupes on our sumac, but Leah assures me that’s what color they are. I’ll have to pay more attention later this year.

The major drawback of sumac in my view is that it spreads vigorously along its root system. If you cut one large sumac, its children continue to develop for years from the root system. That makes it hard to control. The Wikipedia article suggests goats as a control method. I doubt we’ll resort to that.

Windy night

Tuesday night a line of strong storms was moving into Georgia, and it looked like we would get a lot of it here. Around 7 pm it got windy.

These are the trees behind our house. They are pretty tall, and they were whipping around dramatically.

This is what my phone’s weather app showed for the radar at 7:00.

storm7pmThe pushpin is right at our house on the mountain. The blue boxes are storm warnings. Here is what it looked like at 8:30 when the line was almost on us.

storm830pmThe heaviest rain has already split to pass around us. By 8:55 we were getting fairly heavy rain, but not the heaviest.

storm855pmIt was all over here by 10:15, although it looked like we would get at least some additional light rain. We didn’t.

storm1015pm

We got about 0.96 inches of rain, enough to help, but not as much as we needed. Others got significantly more.