Phriday Phavorite Photos – Part Seven

Happy Friday! Time to enjoy some favorites!

To go back in time to One, Two, Three, Four, Five or Six click respectively =-)


My BFF’s BFF, Fagan!


Reflections of… the way it used to be….


Sunrays on the Colorado mountains


Nebraska sunset


Lotus filled with water bubbles


Cutie nuthatch!



Mr. Cardinal


Breck keeping my spot warm.


Spruce cones

Copyright – Ilex Farrell


Blue Jay – Cyanocitta cristata


Blue Jays have a warning call that makes any other birds call. JaY! JaY! JAY!!!


Scientists haven’t figured out the jay’s migration habits yet. Sometimes they fly south, sometime not. Some migrate yearly, some never do.



Jays love peanuts, sunflower seeds and LOVES acorns. Jays will bury seeds for later and not remember where, they hid them, thus contributing to the oak population. Go, Go, Blue Jays!!


King of the mount…. ahem…  King of the Spruce!


Jays have been known to imitate the calls of hawks. Possibly to either call them out or to scare other bird species.
© Ilex Farrell

Arrowhead Plant – Syngonium podophyllum Nephthytis

I got these two Arrowhead plants from work about 3 years ago. They love their location in the South window, however they hang high and don’t get a full dose of good ‘ol sol. They don’t mind less light either.

These are relatives of the Philodendron, another easy plant to grow. They like moist soils, but don’t over-soak them. They like a light 10-10-10 fertilizer.


Pruning is a bit tricky. You don’t want to cut all the way down to the split or you will nip the tip of the new leaf off. As you look at the stem that branches off, you will notice there is a bulge in the stem, this is where the next leaf is curled up in it’s stem.


A still rolled up leaf.

These guys can get spider mites. These don’t get moved outside during the summer, so they’ve been insect free.


The plant will start to shoot ‘runners’ (l o n g branches) after a few years. If you like them, keep them. I’ve got one that is about 15 feet long. I just want to see how long it will actually get! To keep the plant bushy, these should be pruned off. If you do this during the summer months, place the piece, now known as a ‘cutting’, into water and it should soon root, then plant it in a light mix.


This is the start of a runner. See the thick ends of the leaf stem at the main branch? Don’t cut below this.


After it grows out, the brown dried-up stem can be cut, do not peel it!

© Ilex – Midwestern Plants

Winter Blooming Flowers 1-26-2015

It’s been over 3 months since I pulled off a ‘Blooming Flowers’ post! I can’t wait until spring. I think the earliest I’ve seen flowers was early March, 2012. What a wacky year. Things were so early. We can only hope.

Click HERE to see what was blooming last year!


Schlumbergera truncata – Thanksgiving cactus


Saintpaulias – African Violet


Gymnocalycium mihanovichii – Moon cactus


Schlumbergera truncata – Thanksgiving cactus


Justicia brandegeana – Shrimp plant


Primula polyantha – Primrose

I love these little guys. So cute… And really cheap at $2 a piece.

Phriday Photo Phavorites – Part Six

Happy Friday! Time to enjoy some favorites!

To go back in time to One, Two, Three, Four or Five click respectively =-)


Wood borer trails. Want to know more?


Breck enjoying a cool dip in the lake!




Clematis virginiana – Old man beard


Miss Autumn Hummingbird


Tomatillo in it’s wrapper. See more!



Lake Michigan

wpid-2014-08-23-21.00.26.jpg.jpegwpid-20140805_173835.jpg wpid-20140805_173927.jpg wpid-20140805_173742.jpg wpid-20140805_173722.jpg

Red Bellied Woodpecker – Melanerpes carolinus

Red-bellied Woodpecker’s can stick out their tongues almost 2 inches past the end of their beaks. The tip is barbed and their spit is sticky, which makes it easier to snatch prey from deep crevices. Males generally have longer tongues than females, possibly allowing a breeding pair to forage in slightly different nooks to maximize their use of available food.


This is a female. I’ve not seen a male. Males head is fully red on the back.



Thanks for the peanut suet!!



House Finch – Haemorhous mexicanus


Mrs. left / Mr. right – Winter color

I almost wrote this post about purple finches! Glad I looked into these guys a bit more, they really look alike.


The red color of the male house finch develops from pigments in the food consumed during his molt period (birds can’t make bright red or yellow colors directly). The more pigment in the food, the redder the male. Lack of pigment can cause orange or yellowish males. Females generally prefer to mate with the reddest male.


House finches are monogamous birds. To catch the eye of his ladylove, males soar to great heights, and then gracefully, flutter to a perch, while singing as loud as they can. This is known as butterfly flight.


House finches feed their nestlings exclusively plant foods, a rare thing in the bird world. Many birds that are vegetarians as adults still find animal foods to augment their fast-growing young’s diet with protein.


Hello? Ilex? I’d like some hulled sunflower seeds next time, thaaaaanks!


Wow! I AM cute!

© Ilex Farrell

Four cute puppies from Cyprus need new homes

Midwestern Plant Girl:

Puppies, anyone?

Originally posted on on the road with Animalcouriers:

Amanda recently contacted us for help in finding forever homes for four abandoned puppies she rescued last year in Cyprus and has been looking after ever since. It’s estimated that these lovely ‘Heinz 57′ youngsters were born in early August, so they’re now about five months old. Help with the cost of transporting them to new homes is available.

Amanda tells us:

“On a hot Cyprus September afternoon, six hungry and thirsty puppies were found abandoned in a cardboard box by the side of a dusty track. Two puppies found happy new homes here in Cyprus to start their second-chance lives, but four are still looking for their forever families.

These two boys and two girls are completely unspoiled, enjoy meeting new people and dogs, are used to being tormented by our many household cats, and are happy to be alive! They are up to date on vaccinations, are microchipped…

View original 35 more words