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Friday, July 28, 2017

Friday's Fact: My blog's been given a badge! (THANK YOU, Feedspot!)

I'm thrilled to announce that I received word (from Feedspot) that my blog, The Last Leaf Gardener, has been noted as being one of the top one hundred urban blogs! The honor came with a badge to display, which can be seen at the top of this entry.

Here's what Feedspot has to say about this award:

"CONGRATULATIONS to every blogger that has made this Top Urban Blogs list! This is the most comprehensive list of best Urban blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this! I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world."

Thank you, Feedspot for this recognition! It came as a complete surprise! So nice to know someone's appreciating my content, and I'll do my best to keep up my work!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Wednesday's Wisdom: Food for Thought

The other day I witnessed a blue jay offering his/her soul mate a peanut, while they perched on a stand that supports a bird feeder in my rooftop garden. Seeing these birds feeding each other prompted me to do some research! Here's some info on the matter (according to Silalis):

1. This might (one bird feeding another) be to "test" the male's ability to forage and provide for young. It could be an indicator of the odds of successfully breeding. It can occur during copulation, nestbuilding and/or egg laying.

2. Or it might be to reinforce or maintain a pair bond.

3. Another option is it might be to increase a female's fitness by providing her with extra food, which probably increases the quality of her eggs or may advance the laying date.

That's food for thought!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Yet Another Tuesday's Truth for Week NO. 50! (When a Northern Cardinal pays a visit...)

I don't want this Tuesday to pass without announcing another truth for this date of July 25th, which is is something I shared on TLLG's Facebook Page. I've been honored by a visit from a male Northern Cardinal, who stopped by my rooftop garden last night to enjoy a dinner at my wreath-style bird feeder.

Here's Tuesday's Truth for Week Fifty: Cell Phones & Seashells Have a Shared Trait!

Welcome to the fiftieth week of my Tuesday's Truths series! The Mutts comic strip suffices for today, reminding me that seashells and cell phones have a shared trait!

Monday, July 24, 2017

A Young Starling Tries The "Stewie" Tactic!

A very young European starling, alighting on a bird feeder, which is hanging on the Japanese Larch (Larix Kaempferi), that grows in my urban garden, had his/her beak wide open for a number of minutes (as evidenced by te four images atop this blog entry).

Thursday, July 20, 2017


The images atop this entry featuring aerial views of my rooftop garden were both taken by Juan V. The first one was taken two weeks ago, on July 6th, and it was featured in a blog post, published on that same day.
Juan took the second image when he came to work with me in my garden yesterday. Some changes were made to my garden, and, I'm wondering if you can spot them (by comparing the two images), dear reader?

Aside from a number of changes re the moving containers of flora around, there are two more "major" changes. One is obvious, and another is somewhat camouflaged by flora that has been growing in my garden for a number of years.

The more obvious change is the addition of a new bird bath. It is a square structure (made of cement) and it can be seen above (as well as to the left) of Juan's photo credit.

The following picture shows my new bird bath as it "stands" (indicated by the number one), in relation to my existing bird baths (that are a hanging variety and indicated by numbers two and three).

The change which is camouflaged by flora can be seen in the next set of pictures, where it is indicated by arrows.

I admit that it's hard to decipher what's new, as my garden is so lush (at least from an aerial perspective)!

Therefore, I'm including a "straight on shot" of the what was added yesterday.

The Creeping Jenny has been pulled out of the box which she shares with myvine known as a Sweet Autumn Clematis, and in that plant's place, Juan V has planted a Verbena bonariensis with a Perovskia atriplicifolia (AKA Russian Sage) on either side of it. In front of the box-style container, Pennisetum 'Fairy Tales' (which is an ornamental grass whose common name is Fountain Grass) has been planted (seen at the left in the image), and an onion flower plant has also been potted (seen at the right in the image).

And there you have it, dear reader, another test of your powers of observation! How did you do, dear reader?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

In Remembrance of Clara May Fitchie Melahn (Born 7-23-1900 Died 7-19-1987)

I am my maternal grandparents first grandchild, and was born on their wedding anniversary. In the image atop this entry, my grandmother can be seen holding me. You might recognize the picture as I have featured it in at least one of my prior entries here on Blogger.

She died on this day of July 19th in 1987; and, her parting words to me were ones that urged me to get back to my writing.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Here's Tuesday's Truth for Week Forty-Nine Young birds & fledglings love having grapes!

Welcome to the forty-ninth week of my Tuesday's Truths. Today's post is dedicated to young birds (or should I say fledgings) including an European starling (pictured above — eating a grape— in my rooftop garden).

This little bird and I have something in common: We both appreciate grapes. Only I appreciate my grapes after they are "transformed" into a glass of wine!

And because I know how much I enjoy a glass (or two) of vino, I always make sure that I have placed grapes for my visiting birds in either a bird feeder (such as the one above) or on a saucer (such as the one below), where a young American Robin has grabbed one and is enjoying having his/her own grape.

The young Northern mockingbird is a bit more apprehensive about indulging (as evidenced in the next set of images); perhaps he/she is a bit intimidated by the other birds who are visiting my place.

I don't blame the Northern mockingbird for being cautious about partaking in the eating of a grape!

After all, perhaps he/she has heard the news re how those who grow grapes in vineyards for purposes of making wine attempt to keep birds away from their grapes by employing falcons to take care of starlings, robins and mockingbirds!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Holidays that Honor the Treat of Ice Cream (And A Shout Out to Ice Cream Makers)

I learned of the holiday known as National Ice Cream Day when I went to my local flea market which is kiddy corner from The American Museum of Natural History (AMNH).

According to Holiday Insights (HI), it is always celebrated on the third Sunday of the month.

HI writes "In 1984, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed July as National Ice Cream Month. He also established National Ice Cream Day as the third Sunday in the month."

The holiday could've easily come and gone without my knowing it, because I either had forgotten about this occasion, or, I didn't realize that yesterday was already the third Sunday of the month!

But because of my Sunday routine I was made aware of the holiday.

You see, quite often on Sunday I will bring my "materials" to a composting station at a nearby Greenmarket that is situated parallel to the grounds of The AMNH. On occasion, after doing so, I will check out my local flea market since it is in such close proximity.

Yesterday, there was an array of ice cream vendors at that flea market, which is not the norm, and the array of what each one offered was mind boggling, causing me to recall the Mutts strip which I've posted atop this entry.

Unfortunately I was not feeling very well and eating ice cream would not have been an option, but I still was able to check out the array of vendors, and since they are NYC based, there's a good chance that I can try their products when I'm feeling better.

I need not worry that I could not do so on the official day, for, as I just stated President Regan, ear-marked the entire month of July as National Ice Cream month. And if I'm not feeling better during the  fifteen days that remain in July, I can always celebrate on December 13th, which is Ice Cream Day!

In any event, for you New Yorkers who may have missed National Ice Cream Day, fear not, I have the scoop (excuse the pun) on the various vendors who participated at my local flea market and you can check them out at your leisure.

The first one that I came upon was Too Cool Chix Ice Cream sandwiches. Their web-site states:"The founders of Too Cool Chix are Michele Elmer and Sharon Monahan. Together they’ve elevated the humble ice cream sandwich because they think outside the pint."

I was drawn to their "station" because of their use of birds (chicks) in their logo and packaging as seen below:

I am hoping to feel well enough to try their "Beauty Bar," which is Lavender Ice Cream with a Soft Lemon Cookie.

I told the women working their that I had helped Cam write her book, Words In Our Beak Volume One,

and I boldly proposed they came up with a flavor in Cam's honor! Rather they do this or not, I intend to try their product and encourage you to do so also, dear reader.

Another vendor that I came upon was VICTORY GARDEN, featuring gelato made from goat's milk.

I will be eager to try this at some point, for my cyber-freindship with the goat-raising, Italy-based Michelle Fabio, has always been an impetus for me to try products made with goat's milk. Readers of my blog may recall that I've written about Fabio in by gone years.

Moreover, Fabio has reviewed the digital version of Words In Our Beak Volume One for Goodreads.

Be that as it may I'm intrigued by products made with goats milk because of the wonderful cheeses made by Ardith Mae, who sells them at the greenmarket that I go to on Sundays.

The folks at VICTORY GARDEN were very accommodating and if their product is anything like the goodness they showed, I'm in for a taste treat when I'm on the mend!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

85 YRS AGO: CROSSING THE STREET 7-16-1932 (Times they are not always a changing.....)

Five days ago, I posted an entry here on Blogger in honor of E.B. White's birthday. Now, I came across the essay posted above, which he wrote eighty-five years ago.

Crossing the street in NYC hasn't changed all that much, except folks who are cycling or who are walking at a fast pace while texting are often "tearing through the town going the wrong way on the one-ways mowing down the faithful and the meek."

Friday, July 14, 2017

Friday Feeling: I've been thankful for a NEW association re cardinals.

Here's a female cardinal about to indulge in one of many grapes which I've placed on a saucer in my rooftop garden for the dining pleasure of the birds who visit me.

She may be related to Cam, the female cardinal who authored the book, Words In Our Beak.

As many who follow my cyber-venues, Cam is very near and dear to my heart.

Moreover, she has taught me a number of things re the many members of the avian community, especially her bird type. Prior to my meeting Cam, I was not too familiar with female cardinals.

I knew about the male cardinal as he is the state bird of Illinois where I spent my childhood through early adulthood years.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Thursdays Thoughts: Challenging the adage "bad things happen in threes" REPRISED


Today I am thinking about the gosling triplets (pictured above), which I encountered in Central Park this past June, because I am also one of three (sisters), although we are not triplets.

A photograph of us with our grandfather that was taken when we were very young can be seen in the next picture.

Being one of three, has caused me to challenge the adage,"bad things happen in threes," which I did in a blog post that was published in 2011. This entry deals with the placement of flora (in threes) within my rooftop garden.

In any event, I'm thinking of the "bad things happen in threes," adage on this day of July 13th, as it is my youngest sister's birthday. She is the one in the middle in the aforementioned photo (I'm the one to her left — or seen to her right in this image).

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Wednesday's Wisdom: A Re-Visited Lesson! (From Thoreau, whose b'day is today)


On this day in 1817, Henry David Thoreau was born in the town of Concord Massachusetts. I have written about him a number of times here on Blogger, and if you'd like to refer to those posts, please click here. I think of the wisdom shown in Thoreau's writings on many occasions, but even more so when I encounter a house sparrow, which happens on countless occasions, given the number of this bird type that are living in NYC.

The six photographs atop this entry feature sparrows alighting atop various flora as well as various places (during all season) in my rooftop garden.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Yet Another Tuesday's Truth for Week NO. 48! (It's Cow Appreciation Day!)


I don't want this Tuesday to pass, without announcing another truth for this date of July 11th, which is occurring on a Tuesday. It happens to be Cow Appreciation Day!

The photograph atop this blog entry was featured in a prior entry here on Blogger, and is comprised of images taken by yours truly. This picture is featured in the Black and White Photo Gallery of my web-site,; which was created by Chris Deatherage.

My print, Cow with Children, has also been rendered into a greeting card, information is available within the card-shoppe on my web-site.

As you may recall, dear reader, Chris Deatherage has also formatted one of the digital versions of Words In Our Beak Volume One, into the softcover version that is now available on MagCloud.

But getting back to cows, they are one of the first animals I loved as a child. I'd see them when our family took side trips through the countryside.

The cow in the image atop this entry was one I saw on a drive to Illinois State University, but the children in the aforementioned picture are ones I encountered while studying at London University.

Be that as it may, I'm grateful for this sweet animal and happy to give them cyber time on their special day!


The non-hardcover version (or versions)  of volume one within the Words In Our Beak book series that are mentioned in this entry may only remain available for a limited time, but hardcover versions of volume one, two and three can now be found wherever books are sold. 


Please click here to go to my blog post that provides details as to where you can get these books. Additionally, I have rendered some images from these books into other formats and they are available via Fine Art America (FAA). Some of my other photographs (Black & White CollectionKaleidoscopic Images and the famous Mandarin duck who visited NYC) can also be found on my FAA pages.

Tuesday's Truths WK 48: E.B. White's B'day!

Welcome to the forty-eighth week of my Tuesday's Truths. Today's post is dedicated to E.B. White, who was born on this day in 1899. Many people know him from his book, Charolette's Web. As you may recall, dear reader, I've written about White's intent in his creating Charolette's Web here Blogger.

In any event, White's desire to be true to the animals who he anthropomorphized was my inspiration in helping Cam with her book, Words In Our Beak Volume One.

But getting back to White's writings: Besides Charolette's Web, E.B. White wrote other books (including Stuart Little, Here Is New York, and, The Elements of Style).

However, he is also known for his prolific essays which were published in The New Yorker. I have featured a number of them on Facebook and within blog entries here. I'm so thankful to have made his acquaintance through his writings and aspire to leave a similar legacy!


The non-hardcover version (or versions)  of volume one within the Words In Our Beak book series that are mentioned in this entry may only remain available for a limited time, but hardcover versions of volume one, two and three can now be found wherever books are sold. 


Please click here to go to my blog post that provides details as to where you can get these books. Additionally, I have rendered some images from these books into other formats and they are available via Fine Art America (FAA). Some of my other photographs (Black & White CollectionKaleidoscopic Images and the famous Mandarin duck who visited NYC) can also be found on my FAA pages.

Friday, July 7, 2017


The awesome photographs atop this entry of a Peregrine Falcon, were taken by Reggie Williams. He is a technician who I met at an Imaging Center a little over a month ago. I had gone to that Xray facility at the urging of my doctor, who upon examining me for injuries I sustained on the Saturday prior to this past Memorial Day, urged me to have a specific Xray.

I had asked Reggie (who was supervising my particular technician) to take a couple photos of the equipment that was being used to diagnosis the extent of my injury because I was so grateful to be able to avail myself of Xrays that would pinpoint the extent of my injury. The pictures he took on that day can be seen in the next set of images (and you might recognize them from as they are nearly identical to images used in one of my previous posts).

I explained to him that my reason for requesting this, was because on a few occasions I had participated in rescuing wild birds who had ultimately passed away; and their dying was attributed to the fact that the bird rehab place where I had taken them did not have proper Xray equipment due to lack of funding. I also confided that whenever my book series becomes financially successful, it's my goal to help the rehab facility procure proper Xray equipment. Upon hearing my motives, Reggie shared with me his appreciation of wild birds.

In any event, today Reggie Williams and the date of my aforementioned Xrays are on my mind today because it was only a few days ago that I discovered the pictures of the falcon atop this entry which he evidently had emailed me on June 14th! I'm not sure why I only recently discovered the correspondence, but, I'm truly thankful that I did. With his magnificent photographs, Reggie included the following message:

"Hi Patricia, 

It was a pleasure meeting and speaking with you in addition to providing your medical imaging at Lenox Hill Radiology last week. I attached a few pictures of the raptor that I took while I lived in Boston. I left out the more grotesque ones where the bird was actually feeding :-). Your blog is great and I will look in more often for a good read. 

It is truly amazing, the people we meet, in our day to day travels and such. I'd be remiss not to mention how thankful I am to have met you. I took a look at your blog and it inspired me to continue writing and taking pictures. Things that I have enjoyed doing all my life but have let get away from me. You have a very pleasant aura. Thank you for chatting with me and I look forward to speaking with you soon!

Have a blessed day!"

My discovery of Reggie Williams' email to me came at an opportune time, as I'm on shaky ground these days, and as a result, I often experience discouragement, even despair re my circumstances.

Thank you, Reggie Williams, for sharing your awesome photographs and heartfelt words with me!