Sunday, October 21, 2012

Who Invited All The Bugs!

These are Red-shouldered Beetles.  I have never heard of them before, and I don't think I have seen them before this Fall.  They cluster, they crawl, they swarm, they fly, they are everywhere.  According to the research on the internet, they are a relative of the love bug.  Now love bugs I know.

When I lived in Florida, people were warned of the impending Love Bug Mating Season.  They hook up end to end and make one weird looking creature.  They swarm-just like the above critters-and when you are driving they SPLAT all over your car.  If you get in a big swarm, it could harm your paint on your car.  So a lot of folks got bras for the front of their cars to prevent dangerous splats.

Back to my bugs.  I wanted to know what they were attracted to, and I found it is box elders, althea, and a few other plants.  The "experts" say you have to remove the attracting plants to get rid of them. I have a huge box elder next to the deck, and multiple box elders in the jungle on the west side of the property.  I have one huge althea next to the carport.  So that option is not an option.

So I guess I will live with them until it freezes for good.  I am sure they will go away then.  Oh-well-then it will be time for the lady bugs to hatch and swarm all over the house. 

In other weird nature stories-I have sunflowers making blooms right now.  I am sure this week will push them close to opening.  We are to have warm and moist weather this week, so I am sure they will be happy.

 I had to start feeding the birds much too early because of the drought.  They arrived at the tail-end of the drought, and there were no seed pods for them to eat.  They were looking for food, especially the biggest birds-crows, blackbirds, grackles, etc.  So, I started putting out sunflower seeds.  And sure enough, as soon as we got the first rain, sprouts occurred.

My friend OSM has visited twice this week.  I think she is finally getting the right advice and she likes this doctor.  Yesterday we took a ride down south on the interstate, and I cut across at Chester to Hwy 71.  We went to Ft. Smith State Park to eat a picnic at lakeside.  It was so hot to sit out in the sun and eat.  All the dogs were hot and tired, but I walked them quite a ways while she was finishing her food.

I haven't been sewing at all, but I did get a little knitting done.  I am almost on the toe of sock 2.  I did get a little bit of carding done on the yellow wool.  No spinning on the wheel right now. 

The saddest thing is all the wind we have been getting.  All the leaves are blowing off quickly.  This weekend usually is the peak weekend for color, but I guess it was last weekend.  I did not see the colors yesterday that I normally see in that part of the Ozarks.  A lot of yellowish brown, light brown, rusty brown, brown, reddish brown, etc. 

I am getting ready for nesting.  It is getting to be that time of year.  It seems just as my spirits go down, and I get my nest ready, it warms up and I can get outside.  I know that soon the cold will settle in, but I enjoy the warmish Fall days.  I got more Johnson grass dug out last week.  Sigh!  That is never ending.

I went to Eureka Springs last week with CJE.  That was fun.  We ate a nice lunch at a little tea room, and we walked to quite a few shops.  She had to buy some hot sauce and the shop was uphill from where we were standing.  She concluded her business, and back to home we headed.  A nice little outing.

I am thinking of future projects, looking at pictures, but right now I am not doing much knitting.  It is okay to have a lull.  Some times my hands hurt, but I keep using them.  I do not give in to such stuff as stiff or achy hands.  My back hurt pretty bad after my bout in the garden.  I was able to fill up a whole bucket of grass rhisomes.  Isn't old age a great invention?! 

So that's the scoop.  Not much news, but I will take a picture of my sunflower when it blooms.  I may get two before Frost, but for sure, one will pop open this week.  It has been a strange Fall this year. 

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