Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Southern sounds and Autumn colors -

I told you recently about these noisy insects - and today I can
 actually share a photo I managed to take of a '17 year cicada' hanging
 out on the back deck. If you touch one of these guys - about 2" long - their
 shriek is quite startling!

Along with donning face masks, some North Carolinians may also be wearing
 ear plugs! 
After nearly two decades underground, a wave of periodical cicadas
 emerged this summer and they are a noisy bunch! 
Last spotted in 2003, hoards of 17-year cicadas, referred to as Brood IX,
 have arisen from the soil and they are deafening. When one whizzes by your
 ear you are startled at the noise it makes. 
Then, when several thousand start 'singing' together in the trees
in the early evening, you really could use ear plugs!

With evenings now starting to cool a little, at the weekend we enjoyed
 grilling outside, then eating supper in the gazebo. . . . . .serenaded by
these creatures!

Sunday, before the heat set in, time was well spent doing a lot of front garden
 late summer chores.  These consisted mostly of working with pots of annuals,
 herbs etc. all of which had seen better days. I've kept a couple of pots of basil
going for a bit longer - just have to have fresh basil outside the door while the
 good tomatoes are still coming!

At Home Depot I picked up a couple of pots of asters for some much needed
 color outside the front door - chrysanthemums will be added a little later,
still too hot for them.
Bees and butterflies found the asters immediately. 

Noticed today Blogger is playing with us yet again regarding font
 and photo sizing - have you noticed? 
Getting the type sized to match in each row of a paragraph is often a pain.
I must say though I do like being able to do a final resize of photos by 
dragging the corners. Do you like this new feature? I wonder if it will
remain. I hope so.


  1. Dearest Mary,
    What lovely photos you added, only too bad if you did write it in the 'new' blogger, the 1st photo's image will not show on the sideline. You can see on my blog where you are added on my blog list to the right... Only the bottom part (photo) with Mary shows.
    Why can't they leave things as they are?! We all got used to working with it.
    Yes, the Cicadas have serenaded here very loudly. That is part of our subtropical summer evenings I guess?! Now they seem to be gone as the temperature sure dropped.
    Enjoy the upcoming autumn!

    1. Yes, I see what you mean - new Blogger has a ways to go before things will be working properly I believe.
      Wishing you fine Autumn days - once this latest hurricane rain has left the southeast - coming down heavily here this morning!

  2. Yes the photo feature was different again yesterday. Once I get used to something, it seems like they change it again. Those cicadas sound like a noisy bunch. I tend to like them but we only get a few around our area so it's not too bad. And I had never heard of 17 year cicadas. How interesting.

    1. Loree, there are other groups of cicadas also - a couple of years ago the 13 year ones arrived so we had a noisy summer then also, lol!!!!

  3. We hear those Cicadas every night here too. Those asters are such a pretty color.

    1. Hoping today you don't get flooding in your area Penny - I envy your hill on days like this as we get a lot of rain from Hurricane Sally!

  4. I put a photo of a cicada on my last post, although I didn't know what it was at the time. One of my readers identified it for me. They are huge and, yes, noisy. Your asters are much more attractive. Had them at my last house and loved seeing them come out as fall drew near. May have to see if I can find a place for them here.

  5. Dear Mary - I really love the vivid shade of your Asters captured so beautifully by you, do they have small flowers like our Michaelmas Daisies? I didn't realise that you can do a final resize of photos by dragging the corners - how did you discover that? It is so true that the lettering changes - I shut a draft post down and the next time I open it the font has changed from my choice to something that New Blogger has decided it should be!!!
    What a curious life that of the Cicadas must be - vanishing underground for so many years.

    1. PS I now realise what you are talking about when resizing photos Mary - mine has only changed to the new format today. Obviously things happen quicker for you across the pond on New Blogger.

  6. Oh my! I would not like those things. How much longer will they be around? Good thing it's a seventeen year thing. The asters are beautiful. My neighbor has wild asters growing. Lovely.

    I do like the photo sizing feature. I'm wondering if setting your font (there are so many to choose from) and size on the Design page would help. There are still a few kinks for them to work out. Hope they don't have too rough a time of it.

  7. Although I have no knowledge of Blogger, I give you credit for your patience. Asters always remind me of my parents and the days between summer and autumn. They bloomed when the mums were just starting to grow buds. I remember quite a few types of asters which they would start from seeds. Gardening was just one of the outdoor activities they enjoyed together. Another one was walking in the woods to pick wild mushrooms and black walnuts. In the spring they picked wild watercress and dandelion greens. My Mother canned the mushrooms, made salads with watercress and wilted dandelion salads with warm vinegrette bacon dressing. The black walnuts required many hours of drying, cracking and picking out the meat. Our stained fingers were a challenge to get clean. The nuts were stored to make nut rolls and cookies for the holidays. Just the sight of your asters bought so many memories to me this evening. Thank you Mary.

  8. A fabulous coloured aster. Is it a shrub type. It is not the same as the annual asters I grow.(has it got a botanical name on the label? )

  9. Quickly, enlarging photos has been my biggest problem with the new blogger. I hope we get some info on this.

    Cicadas scare the heck out of me--anything with a hard shell including ladybugs and stinkbugs. I also don't care for anything that moves or jumps quickly like crickets or grasshoppers. I grew up with all of these varmints, and I love to garden, but I also know how to run!

    Enjoy your wonderful al fresco doing. I hope you have a vase of those gorgeous flowers on your table!

  10. Being serenaded by cicadas sounds a lot more romantic than the reality! The gentle buzz of bees around the asters would be more to my taste as a backing track.

  11. I actually like hearing the sound of the cicadas on a hot summer night! They're starting to slowly fade away though here in IL as the weather gets cooler.

    Your asters are so pretty. I've never tried those as an annual. Perhaps I'll do so this later this fall, for a pot of flowers on my porch.

    I haven't done a blog post since early Sept and I used the old format. I hope I can still use it next time I blog. I hate the new format. There's so many problems with it. I was talking to a couple of bloggers who use Wordpress and when I told them I still use Blogger, they laughed at me and said it was so old school. :-( However, I have no desire to re-learn a whole new platform for blogging.

  12. Yes, blogger is a total pain. I wrote to them to complain.
    I love, love your asters and really want to get some for my garden.
    Oh my, cicadas now!!!! People on Facebook have been saying "now all we need is locust". It is crazy!


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