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Tuesday, May 11, 2021

"Leaving New York is Never Easy [for the one who leaves and the one he/she leaves behind]" Tuesday's Truths WK 215


For my 215th episode of Tuesday's Truths, I'm referring you to an article of mine that was published (yesterday) by "I love The Upper Westside." 

In it I discuss the truth that leaving New York is never easy [for the one who leaves and the one he/she leaves behind].

Monday, May 10, 2021

A Recent Visit By Cardinals


Last Monday, shortly after Juan V left from working with me in my garden, I had a visitor who happened to be a male Northern cardinal. He is featured in the imagr atop this entry which is very aimilar to the ones included in this past Tuesday's (5-4-2021) blog post.

As I stated in thse entry, "This incident was most welcome after having made my place more beautiful with yesterday's plantings. In any event the handsome creature is featured in the sequence of images atop this entry which serve as a play-by play to his discovering peanuts I had placed in a small petri-dish-style bird feeder, that hangs in close proximity to my lush pair of kiwi vines."

In any event this male cardinal's visit was followed by a visit from an array of other avian creatures including a very young female cardinal.

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Mother's Day 2021


My mother, when she was pregnant with me, can be seen in the color snapshot featured atop this post. She can also be seen (pregnant with me) in the picture directly below.


My mother looks radiant and dad seems happy too, but even after having two more daughters, their marriage fell apart when I was in grade school. He moved out of the house and she was inconsolable.

Perhaps because I'm the eldest child, she turned to me with her heavy heart and everything that was on her mind. For much of the time I felt like I was her mother on many levels.

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Remembering Peggy Wood: “Progress is being made.”


Today, May the 8th, I might have been getting together with the celebrate the birthday of  my dearly departed editor, Peggy Wood, had she not passed away on the last day of December of 2014. Peggy was the editor of the very first version of Words In Our Beak Volume One, which was an iBook digital version (photo of the cover is featured in the image atop this entry). It was released after she died.

Friday, May 7, 2021

This Friday's Facts are about COSMOS!


The lyric lines, "what a differnce a day makes," often come to my mind, especially in terms of my roof extension garden, which is featured in the photo atop this entry. I took the photograph this morning. As you can surmise the sun is shining brightly and the flora which I grow here is thriving. I am always grateful for this, especially when weather conditions have threatened the growing process, for a couple of days ago we had such heavy rains (as seen in the image directly below), I had reason to believe (based on what has happened in bygone years with severe showers) that a number of just-now-coming-up flowers as well as buds might drop.


Naturally I was concerned about all the flora who are in their early 2021 blooming phase but I was especially concerned about my Cosmos.

Thursday, May 6, 2021

National Nurses Day 2021


On this day in 1974, "New Mexico nurses initiated a resolution in 1981 to have May 6th declared National Recognition Day for Nurses. The American Nurses Association (ANA) Board of Directors took up the banner and promoted the proposal. In 1982, the United States Congress designated May 6th to be National Recognition Day for Nurses and President Ronald Reagan signed the proposal."

My maternal grandmother, Clara Fitchie Melahn, seen in the photo (atop this entry) taken when she was a young woman, was 74 years of age at the time Regan signed the proposal. She had been long retired from nursing as she had left her career when she had children.

My grandmother had quite an influence on me, but the only experience I had being a nurse is when I played one (in the 1980's) on a soap opera, "One Life to Live. 

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

My HF Clematis Vines are in bloom again...





This Sunday is Mother's Day and like any new mother joyful over moments of her new child's life (such as the first time she sees a smile or hears her child's first utterance), so am I with my H.F. Young Clematis, that I have in my garden

I've had them in my garden since the early 2000's and each spring when they are born again after a winter's long nap, my spirits are lifted. 

It's been quite a number of years now that they have come back in the spring, and a few days ago they made their first appearnce for this year of 2021.

Some pictures featuring details of this year's buds and flowers are atop this entry. 

As you can tell, their blooms and buds tend to be nearly as large as the light bulbs on the string lights which hang over my garden.

I've mentioned them prior posts here on Blogger, they are another great find from the greenmarket at Union Square.

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Bird Day 2021 (Tuesday's Truths WK 214)



Yesterday shortly after Juan V (JV) left from working with me in my garden, I had a visitor who happened to be a male Northern cardinal.

This incident was most welcome after having made my place more beautiful with yesterday's plantings. In any event the handsome creature is featured in the sequence of images atop this entry which serve as a play-by play to his discovering peanuts I had placed in a small petri-dish-style bird feeder, that hangs in close proximity to my lush pair of kiwi vines.

One of these vines is the narrator of my garden-themed movie, The Kiwi Speaks! Fifteen Minutes of Fame...almost, which can be viewed on my You Tube channel and/or my Vimeo channel. 

In this mini movie, the vine talks about what it is like to live within my rooftop garden which is located on the Upper Westside of Manhattan.

A few years after this kiwi vine experienced nearly fifteen minutes of fame by talking about my place, a wildbird, known as a female cardinal named Cam, also expirenced fame by narrating a three volume book series about my place.

Monday, May 3, 2021

National Garden Meditation Day 2021


According to a web-page for National Calender Day, today, May 3rd is National Garden Meditation Day. Here is part of what they have to say re this hoiday: 

"National Garden Meditation Day, annually on May 3rd, encourages everyone to take time for one’s self and relax. Working in the garden, tending to the plants and flowers, or resting quietly on a bench on a beautiful day in the garden are forms of meditation. Both can be restorative to the soul and a refreshing way to be out in nature. Meditation and gardening offer many benefits. When you couple it with the outdoor peace of a garden, you also get to enjoy the benefits nature has to offer."

Part of my National Garden Meditation Day was spent working with Juan V (JV) in my garden and the photo atop this entry shows how it looked when we finished in the early afternoon. At the northend of my garden I have a newcomer.

Sunday, May 2, 2021

2021's First Sunday in May


Under "normal" circumstances, The TD Five Boro Bike Tour would be occurring today, as it always takes place on the first Sunday in May. 

This annual event began on June 12, 1977 (an image of the event from Bike New York's web-page) and it was known as the Five Boro Challenge with 250 participants. 

Going forward it took place every year on the first Sunday in May hosting up up to 32,000 riders from every state in the nation and 65 countries around the world with the exception of last year when it was cancelled as NYC was in the throes of the coronavirus pandemic related lockdowns.

Saturday, May 1, 2021

"It's May! It's May!"

"It's May! It's May," are a couple of lyric lines from "The Lusty Month of May," a song featured in Camelot. May is also known as National Bike Month.  Moreover it is the month associated with raising awareness re a number of serious health conditions including Osteoporosis, Lupus and ALS.

Both my dear childhood friend, Ellen McConnell Blakeman, for volume two of my Words In Our Beak book series is dedicated (seen in the next picture) and her father died from ALS.

Book cover photo by Chris Deatherage. Press release (also by Chris) for this book can be read in another posting on this blog @ https://www.thelastleafgardener.com/p/blog-page_10.html

Her younger brother Douglas McConnell is very active in raising awareness re this disease through a foundation named A Long Swim, which is referenced in my aforementioned book.


Even though I've self-published my three volume book series about birds, I don't want to go the self-publishing route again as it proved to not be a good means to getting much recognition in book stores or in securing interviews. 

On another note, the month of May is also dedicated to raising awareness to the nerve disorder known as NF or Neurofibromatosis.

Friday, April 30, 2021

Arbor Day 2021


I’ve had my dear crabapple tree (a detail from her foliage is featured in the image atop this entry) growing in my garden since March of 2016 and she continues to bring me pleasure. 

This year after a rough winter, she came back in March and I wrote about this fact here on Blogger. Moreover, I published another post about her this past Friday.

She is one of the the four trees growing in my place (the others are a Beech Tree, a Japanese Larch and a Japanese Red Maple).

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Facts About Sparrows (Wednesday's Wisdom)



The other day when I was on Broadway I noticed some tulips swaying in the wind, but it was not until I put my camera’s memory card in the computer that I noticed a young female House sparrow had been catching some rays alongside those flowers.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Tuesday's Truths WK 213: Lilies of the Valley can be deadly.

©PatriciaYoungquist2021.This image features the flowers known as Lilies of the Valley..

©PatriciaYoungquist2021.This image features the flowers known as Lilies of the Valley..

©PatriciaYoungquist2021.This image features the flowers known as Lilies of the Valley..

Lilies of the Valley (the flower type seen in the images directly above growing in front of a brownstone on the street where the building I live in is located), are not as innocent as they look, they can be deadly. 

I first was introduced to this flower type when my grandfather, seen in the picture directly below with a tree he had just planted.


His Lilies of the Valley grew alongside of the northern portion of his home which is off camera in this image. He might've been an influence in my liking trres and garden,s which is something I've discussed in one of my earliest posts here on Blogger.

I do not recall ever hearing about the dangers posed by Lilies of the Valley, but if you'd like to read about this phenomenon, dear reader, please allow me to refer you to an article published by The Spruce, and that dear reader, is my Tuesday's Truth for this two hundred and thirteenth segement.

Monday, April 26, 2021

71 Years Ago Today....


This essay, by E.B. White, which is featured in the text-based image above, was published by The New Yorker 71 years ago today. As a writer it truly speaks to me and I've shared it before here on Blogger but I've still yet to upend my desk.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

A Nod to Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day

Image credit: https://www.alternativephotography.com/worldwide-pinhole-photography-day-last-sunday-in-april-every-year/

It's the last Sunday in April, which means it's World Wide Pinhole Photography Day. Although I no longer use those types of cameras, they were a big part of the work I did a photographer in the 1990's. 

In 2019, I published a blog post about this holiday and my endeavors as a pinhole photographer. Within that entry, I also have included images of my photographs that were created with pin-hole cameras. If you'd like to see that post, please click here.

At this juncture photographically, my emphasis is on flora and fauna. My photographs of these subjects can be found within a number of posts on this blog  and some of them are also featured on my Pinterest Boards as well as Instagram

Moreover, my three volume book series, Words In Our Beak includes hundreds of images of flora and fauna.

This image features the front cover of my three volume book series, “WORDS IN OUR BEAK." Info re these books is in a blog post @ https://www.thelastleafgardener.com/2018/10/one-sheet-book-series-info.html
MY BOOK SERIES

The goal of these books is to open readers to a simple understanding of the winged world and their environment. Set in a rooftop urban garden (mine) in New York City, my story is told in the voice of Cam, a female cardinal, who visits it. These books are directed to children and adults who are curious about birds (as well as gardening) want to learn about these topics from a unique perspective.

Saturday, April 24, 2021

It's the pits!

©PatriciaYoungquist2021. This photo features Daffodils catching some shade from the sun's rays from within a sturdy, masterfully crafted tree pit. I've published a number of posts re this flower type on this blog. They can be read @ https://bit.ly/3tU6ymA  I've also published posts which discuss tree pits and they can be read @ https://bit.ly/3nniZoH

In the photo directly above, a few daffodils are catching some shade from the sun's rays by being within a sturdy, masterfully crafted tree pit. CURBED reporter Diana Budds calls these structures "micro-Edens," but the city's parks department calls them "tree pits."

Friday, April 23, 2021

Remembering William Shakespeare


When I spoke by phone to my dear friend, VB,  I mentioned to him that we have had a lot of heavy rains this month which I found to disprove the adage,“April showers bring May flowers,” as our showers are taking nearly away chances of May flowers.

He responded by quoting a line from Sonnet 18 by William Shakespeare (who died on this day in 1564): “Rough Winds do shake the darling buds of May.”

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Earth Day 2021


Earl and Mooch (from Patrick McDonnell's Mutts comic strip) as well as the prolific Mehmet Murat İldan sre spot on, for indeed "Wherever there are birds, there is hope."

For as discouraged as I might feel from time to time, whenever I see birds (such as the ones featured in the next sequence of photographs) in nearby Central Park, I feel more hopeful about most circumstances.








I also feel more hopeful about most circumstances when avian creatures spend time in the courtyard trees.

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

I still need help. (Tuesday's Truths WK 212)

This past Saturday was phase three of my extensive, complicated, much needed dental procedure which I initially mentioned here on Blogger back in February and since that time have posted updates, the last one was on 4-7-2021.

In any event, as I stated, my procedure this past Saturday was phase three of the ordeal and although my time in the chair was much shorter, the procedure was awkward because something is going on with my gums near the area of the affected teeth and my malfunctioning bridge which have been involved.

So I'm not done yet. I have to return to the chair which is disheartening on one level, but it's good on another. This turn of events gives me a bit (a very little bit) of time to scramble for paid assignments and spread the word about my fundraiser.

That being said, last Saturday's appointment left me with a feeling of discouragement as well as a huge headache, so I took a brief walk in nearby Central Park.

During my stroll, I came upon an egret who was carrying a live fish in his beak as he flew across the pond to eat the creature. The following sequence of photographs is a "play by play" of the transport I witnessed. 

Upon my seeing this, I thought as bad as my day was going it was better than the fish who was in the grip of the egret's beak.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Sightings in Theodore Roosevelt Park


"Adjacent to the American Museum of Natural History on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, Theodore Roosevelt Park is rated one of the top five small parks in New York City," states a web-page.

Today I passed through there after dropping off my compost at the nearby greenmarket.

I came upon many lovely sights, including a squirrel.

Friday, April 16, 2021

Friday's Fact: Rainfall still doesn't deter birds from visiting my garden.

 

The first half of this month has certainly lived up to the adage re April having showers, however this year they could be taking away May flowers, as the rain has been more like torrents than showers. Flowers are falling off their stems as a result and flowering trees are dropping their blooms. Such heavy precipitation often begs the question, Where do birds go when it rains?

A number of interesting articles have been published about this, including one by Chipper Birds. As for me, I often know where they go because a number of songbirds spend their rainy days in my garden. This is something I mentioned in a recent post here on Blogger which includes a male cardinal visiting my place during a rainfall.

During yesterday’s heavy rain several species spent time in my place, including a Northern mockingbird and an American robin (the bird types featured in the photographs atop this entry).

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Thursday's Tale: Certain Central Park Tulips Now Have a Georgia O'Keefe Look


This is the first year that I do not have tulips in my garden as I was not able to plant new bulbs in 2020 because of the pandemic. In general, my tulip bulbs don't winter-over well even with my diligent garden winterizing. I truly miss having them this year but memories of my tulips sustain me. I have had such amazing varieties during the many years of my having a garden. Be that as it may when it comes to not having tulips in my garden this year, I have been able to appreciate them in tree pits as well as in Central Park. The tulip seen in the photo atop this entry is one I saw there five days ago.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

When do my pictures say the words or when do my words paint a picture?

It is such an honor to have mockingbirds visit my garden (which one is doing in the image atop this entry), but today for my Wednesday Wisdom segment, I can't find the words to describe the feelings such visitors provoke in me.

Therefore, I will use the words that Henry David Thoreau used to describe when another bird type (a sparrow) how he felt visited his garden.

Here is what he said: “I once had a sparrow alight upon my shoulder for a moment, while I was hoeing in a village garden, and I felt that I was more distinguished by that circumstance than I should have been by any epaulet I could have worn.”

This quotation has been referenced in a number of my blog posts including one published on an anniversary of one of Thoreau's birthdays (July 12th 2017).

Usually I'm not one who is at a loss for words, which is a good thing since I'm a writer but today, when it comes to describing the feeling I had the other day upon seeing a lone mockingbird in my garden, I don't have much to say. 

Perhaps I'm thinking that my words about this have all been said by me (in prior posts) or have been said by writers whom admire.

Another possibly for lack of words might be due to the fact that I've taken a picture of what  I saw and it might suffice due to it being one of those picture says a thousands words things.

According to a web-page, "the idea that a picture can convey what might take many words to express was voiced by a character in Ivan S. Turgenev's novel Fathers and Sons, 1862: 'The drawing shows me at one glance what might be spread over ten pages in a book.'"

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Daffodils: A contendor for NYC's flower + an inspiration to poets (Tuesday's Truths WK 211)


Welcome to my 211th segement of Tuesday's Truths, where I'm pointing out that evidently Michael Bloomberg, when he was mayor of NYC, wanted to designate daffodils, the flower type featured in the image directly above (which was taken in Central Park) to be our city's flower (the state flower is the rose). 

Monday, April 12, 2021

Ed O'Neill Has the Worst Celebrity Recognition Skills Ever? (If so, I'm a close second)

The photo atop this entry features a screen-shot from the You Tube video posted directly below.


In the video Ed O'Neill is on the Ellen DeGeneres show where she "acuses" him of having the "worst celebrity recognition skills ever," 

Apparently he earned the bragging rights for having the "worst celebrity recognition skills ever," upon being in a waiting room at an airport when he wass approached by Britney Spears, who wanted her picture taken with him. He, asuming she was just a young fan, agreed, but after Spear's photo-op (seen within the image atop the entry) went viral is when O'Neill learned the identity of the airport fan.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

April Downpours Did Not Deter Visiting Birds (YAY)!





Today's April showers were more like downpours and lasted from early morning throughout the night. Fortunately they not deter a number of birds from visiting my garden, including a Northern mockingbird, the avian creature featured in the photos atop this entry.