Report from October 5, 2013
I have found two more patches of Carrion Flower (Smilax herbacea), also known as Coprosmanthus herbaceus . (It is a tendril-bearing plant with a stem that arches over bushes like a vine. The flowers are very ill-smelling. The fruit is a cluster of black-blue berries. D.M.)
Cluster flies: This is the very worst infestation of flies we have had in between 16-18 years (being as I can’t quite remember which year going back that it was) What on earth did they do before vacuum cleaners? I gagged one day going into one of the upstairs bedrooms. They had colonies behind all the pictures, in the drapes, in the room corners, at the ceiling. And the rug was covered with dead flies. Gazillions of them.
Apples: two trees behind the house, one Mac, one Northern spy: incredible bowers of flowers in the spring. Thousands of apples this year. All small. All scabbed horribly. Last year: 7 apples on the two trees. Year before that: hundreds of excellent apples. More than we could juice. These are completely organic (right. No one takes care of them even. And our hemp crop is advertised as organic by Purity who farms the lands). There are more than 20 apple trees on the farm.
Hummers: Had our usual inundation of hummers this summer. ‘Come to McAuley’s. There’s always lots of food there.’ Ed puts up 9 feeders in the fenced in back yard at points far from each other to make sure everyone has a turn.