Enough Snow, The Elusive Hawk, Echinacea Seeds & Bird Story

Okay, I’ve decided I’ve had enough snow. I had to shovel a path down my driveway because my plow man wasn’t coming this afternoon – hey there was only 2 15/16″ of snow and the contract says 3″! Where I shoveled the sun dried the driveway. I was sooo tempted to shovel the rest of the driveway, and then around 3:30 he showed up. Now it’s a sheet of ice where he plowed. Argh.

And then I opened the box with the roof rake and it was all in pieces, so I had to assemble that. Easier said than done. The first piece was not lining up right. Urrrrrr – it makes me so mad when you can’t screw something together because someone can’t manufacture something correctly. As I was doing this my friend called and he said I had it backwards. Noooooo, it wasn’t backwards, I know how to read directions! So I got out my trusty metal file and the little metal pieces were flying all over the place (when I get irritated I get really strong). I finally *made* it fit and the rest of it went together fine. Of course my friend figured he was going to get zip attention from me so he hung up (he knows I get very focused on a task at hand and no one can interrupt my train of thought).

So the roof rake works good! The sun was out yesterday afternoon, and the snow was already beginning to form into ice, and I saved my roof (and me) from that strife – yay! I now love my roof rake.

Oh, and Susan and Mary! While I was raking the roof I saw a hawk flying around way above!!! I dropped the rake to go get the camera, but the hawk was gone by the time I got outside again. I *will* capture that elusive hawk in a photo someday *soon*!

Now the Echinacea / bird story. Mon@rch had a posting entitled “Can Birds Learn” the other day, and it reminded me of a bird story. I leave the seed heads of my Echinacea and hyssop plants for the birds, and they swing around on them picking the seeds out of the seed heads all fall, winter and spring. This past June the new plants were growing quite big, but a pair of Goldfinches were still munching away at the seeds. I figured it was time to cut the old plants down. I got the worst scolding of my life from the Goldfinch pair as they watched from my silver maple tree. I have never heard such nasty language from birds directed at me. I felt bad and left the seed heads on the ground for them in my garden. I know, I know I should have stopped cutting the dead heads. But what’s a gardener / birder to do? Here’s a photo I captured yesterday of one of the Echinacea seed heads:

2007-01-10 008

I wonder when I’ll be allowed to cut these down without getting a major bird scolding.

11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mary
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 08:54:28

    What started as a magical day…LOL At least your roof rake dilemma is solved! Birds do cop attitudes. You had better be careful…try cutting back those Echinacea seed heads after dark.


  2. Pam
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 09:07:21

    Mary – reality hit me like a brick falling on my head – oops I have to take care of this stuff – snowplowman isn’t signed up to take care of everything. So I had to get busy after the snow stopped.
    After dark – great idea! I can’t stand to be yelled at by the birds! It makes me feel really bad.


  3. Lynne
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 09:23:46

    I love the picture of the seed head! I leave mine until spring too. Thbirds sure do love them and they add some interest to the flower beds. I like how they look poking up through the snow. Glad the roof rake works well. We don’t have much snow here in Minnesnowta but we’re supposed to drow below zero tonight or tomorrow!


  4. Pam
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 12:21:33

    Thanks Lynne! I love how they look in the snow, too! I took photos outside in 20 degree F weather this morning, but the sun is shining brightly this afternoon and the snow is melting away here. Hope you and your family stay nice and warm!


  5. Sandy
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 17:13:37

    That is a nice shot. Guess you got your exercise today! I don’t mind the clean up outdoors, after a snow. In fact, I love to shovel at night. I hear we may get a storm Monday into Tuesday of next week.


  6. Pam
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 17:29:12

    Thanks Sandy. It is inspired by photos you’ve taken. I don’t usually mind cleaning away the snow either. I didn’t enjoy building the rake – usually I don’t mind putting things together.
    I love to shovel at night, too! It’s so quiet then.


  7. Laura
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 21:12:39

    This is a great pic – the snow makes even the simplest things so beautiful!


  8. Pam
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 21:19:02

    Thanks Laura! I’ve been wanting to photograph snow on dead plants ever since I saw Sandy’s photos. Finally the snow cooperated!


  9. Susan Gets Native
    Jan 11, 2007 @ 23:45:51

    When I dead head, I heap everything up on my brush pile, and I have yet to be scolded for it.
    The hawk will be back. Have that camera primed and ready, girl.


  10. Mon@rch
    Jan 12, 2007 @ 00:25:38

    I love this picture of the seed head also! Love the info on the Goldfinch!! Thanks for linking the site to my article on bird learning and then coming up with your own example!


  11. Pam
    Jan 12, 2007 @ 08:27:23

    Susan – So do I – it’s out back in the woods for the taking. I guess they didn’t want to travel that far – they wanted them left sticking up so they could swing around on them.
    Okay, camera is primed and ready to go!!

    Thanks Mon@rch! I figured you’d like the story about me getting yelled at by the Goldfinch pair.


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