Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Before and After

Clean Slate

Rocky Desert

The Greening

Soon to be showing in this house: The Jungle

Cuban Tree Frog

I think that this bug-eyed monster is probably a Cuban tree frog. How do they get into the screened lanai? They must be able to squeeze their ugly hide through the tiniest openings.

Turtle Day

Don't you look at me like that. I am no turkey!

This turtle munched weeds in a Cowford, Fl backyard.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Dwarf Banana in Leesburg


Loropetalum chinense in Tavares

Monday, November 24, 2008


All cymbidiums are in our NJ greenhouse.


Unknown in Tavares

Dune sunflower in Tavares

Measly yellow bougainvillea in November. I can't wait to show this plant in a year or two from now.

Carolina Jessamine in JAX in December

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Distracted by the many plants in the Discovery Gardens, the search party had almost forgotten about Santa when the red color of many flowers reminded them to pick up their search. Santa, however, remained as elusive as before.





Lake County Discovery Garden

Enticed by the delicious fruit and still hungry, the 'santa search' crew heads to the Lake County Discovery Garden in Tavares to check out the avocado tree.

They also discover coonties which have lived in Florida since the time of the dinosaurs.

Beautiful Mexican sunflowers.

Another relic from prehistoric times: cardboard palm.

Firebush: nectar heaven for humming birds.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Now it's time to eat something fruitily delicious.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Yalaha Bakery

Tired from the exhausting search for Santa Claus, the pilot returned and the ground crew took over. First step: Yalaha German Bakery to get some Brezels.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Finding Santa from the Air

All photos from the air were taken by neighbor Dave O.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Finding Santa

Dave O went up in his small plane to look for Santa from the air above Lake County.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Santa Is Lost

Exhausted from the heat, did Santa crashland in a Floridian cypress swamp? Or did he visit some relatives for a spell?

Cypress root Santas by Georgian artist Greg Phillips.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Santa in Florida

Santa feels really hot because he is drudging through a Floridian jungle. He is happy that a cold spell has lowered the temperature to 60 degrees.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Santa Crossing the Rocky Mountains

Santa has crossed the border from Canada to the US without an I-94 form, took off his skis, and is now crossing the Rocky Mountains in western Colorado. Will he make it in time for St. Nikolaus Day on December 6th?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

New Pets

Pleco is our first Floridian pet. His job: eat the algae in the courtyard pond.

"Plecos, Hypostomus punctatusare, widely known as "the" algae eater at the fish store. Though it is seldom they tell you that they grow to be a foot long and will destroy your plants as they get bigger. They have also been known to get a bit more aggressive as they get older. They do a decent job of cleaning."

Not really pets but exciting. None of these predators would pose for us. All are elusive, but we saw you guys!

Bald eagle on a power pole behind the clubhouse.
Black bear on route 19 in the Ocala National Forest.

Bobcat, coyote, and coral snake were in our backyard, but the photos were found in the net. The coyote is considered a nuisance in Florida. Bobcats fight for survival, and coral snakes are highly venomous, shy, and beautiful. Photos found in the web.

Muhly Grass Fest

Our Muhly grass - a Florida native - blooms its pink head off in fall.

Baby Bougie: we expect great things from her when she grows up.

Our dining room and foyer. The tapa with the dancer is from Fatu Hiva, the Marquesan island of Thor Heyerdahl fame. The islanders have revived their traditions, one of them the production of tapa decorated with ancient tattoo motifs. Luckily, the drawings were preserved by the Krusenstern expedition, the first Russian round-the- world voyage. Krusenstern was a German-Baltic admiral of the Russian fleet.