Friday, October 30, 2009

Volusia County Administration

Downtown DeLand also profits from having the county administration.

Henry A. DeLand, a prosperous businessman in New York, founded DeLand in 1876, with the purchase of a $1,000 plot of land. He decided to move to the area after visiting his brother-in-law, O.P. Terry, who was living in an area called Persimmon Hollow.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

DeLand (1)

DeLand is the county seat of Volusia. It is a pleasant little town with cafes, shops and restaurants. The Athens theater is still an active playhouse.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Good Guy- Bad Guy

No, not these two guys. Check out the seed pod.

Extremely prolific and armed with barbs, tropical soda apple (TSA) of the nightshade family (tomatoes, potatoes) multiplies like rabbits in Australia. Its unripe fruit is pretty like a watermelon of cherry tomato size. The yellow ripe fruit will disperse plenty of tiny seeds with a 95% germination rate. Seeds are known to survive a cow’s stomach and are viable for three years! What an admirably tough plant that you don’t want in your yard. Touch only with sturdy gloves because thorns are everywhere including at the base of the fruit.

Passion flower is a native, perfect fo the caterpillars that become beautiful Gulf Fritillary butterflies. Since passion flower is a rambunctious grower, you may want to buy one of the tamer versions for your garden. Avoid red except for Lady Margret. All the other red passifloras are toxic to caterpillars. Very good for people who hate butterflies.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Animal Kingdom: Asia

Peeing tiger


Flying Foxes (a fruit bat)

Monday, October 5, 2009


What would we do if this deep gorge and a plate glass window would not separate us from this hunk?

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Leesburg’s German Beer Garden in 1944

Ok, ok, the photo shows a Biergarten in Konstanz, Germany. The Leesburg beer garden is a thing of the past.

I was intrigued when I found this book in the Leesburg library: Hitler’s soldiers in the Sunshine State, German POWs in Florida by Robert D. Billinger, Jr. Florida had quite a few camps for POWs. Among those, one was located in Leesburg. It housed a few hundred German prisoners of war. Let me quote a few passages.
“The Germans worked in citrus groves, packing plants, and truck farms in Leesburg, Eustis, Tavares, and Mount Dora.”
“ Karol Borodine, who used prisoners to pick fruit, said, ”They were marvelous and honest workers.”
“Delegates from the International YMCA and from the International Red Cross who visited the new camp location (editor: on today’s Community College Campus across from the airport) found a degree of good humor and goodwill not usual in other camps.”
“The POWs and American service men from the searchlight battery were down there splashing about , swimming, joking, laughing, just having a real good time together.”
“Under the palm trees and live oaks covered with Spanish moss, there was a beer garden that the Germans constructed for their after -work relaxation.”