Saturday, August 27, 2016


Was out looking for place to plant a small plant and found, thought some more dog droppings
left. Noticed they looked a little round, dry and tiny bits of bones. Am guessing are owls, some other birds also upchuck stuff. There is a dropping splat near also,do hear whooting and screeching of owls sometimes.

Wonder if a young owl.

Moth , very large

Heard a sound, something muffled, at the window. Looked up, it was maybe a hummer. Went outside, a large moth on the screen. Found close to Catocala, maybe C.unijuga, but a little diff. Also dont see that its this far south on maps.  Ours has sharper white markings at bottom of wings This looks most like it.
C Ilia
Or C Faustina

Swallowtail Eggs- waiting

One of the Swallowtail (think Western Tiger ) eggs is whitish , so hope it hatched and so far well.
Looked for the little caterpillar (think thats an instar(?)), so far not luck. The other egg is still green. Wonder why the butterfly left them on a Peach( o Almond ) tree seedling in a pot on patio. Read they're foodplant are Willow, Birch, Hollyleaf Cherry, Sycamore, Poplar and Alder. Also wonder if same type of butterfly of caterpillars found on wild grape in yard. Were SO tiny, brownish and looked like a giant eye .

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Indigo vat for dying Blues (natural Fermentation ) The dark

Indigo vat is finally going towards up and running. Is a fermenting vat that let dry for awhile as moved, then again, taking care of Mom and my 2 teens. They helped so much with Mom.
  So, tried to feed it and put in some alkaline water from soaked ashes. Havnt got pH strips or tester yet. Am wondering if better to gently mix daily or really shake and oxygenate then it might grow more yeastys to decrease oxygen (they also increase acidity so keep adding alkaline and feeding yeasties (like ruit,dates, bran, madder...).
Tried some wool and cotton yarns and seems to sometimes be adding colors that doesnt was off even though when pulled out yarn, it was Blue. Reading up and watching YT, its supposed to be yellow when put from vat, then changing to green than blue sd oxidizes. So does it need the sun, or if swing around will it happen faster... so many questions.
Indigo vat with yarns of cotton and wool
Dark Teal on left is first try on wool yarn(washed), center is cotton 1 or 2 dips, rt is wool,same. sitting on linen , dipped 1 and also ecoprinted with St peas,Red MW Geranium...
Am wondering how to print or paint with it. Think John Marshall might have good info on his website.
Read that in Slovakia used stamps (metal or wood) to print with a resist then dyed in indigo. WOnder if any still do that.
So can learn how to extract, how to use today or how to make for storage and use later.

Also what effects the amount of indogotin able to extract and what effects colors (blues,purple/blues...
Found some other also trying fermenting vats  Here is her info to turn from fresh plants fermenting a few days in bucket of water, alkalize, aerate, strain. 
and found this research -  different varieties of woad at diff temps and pH , if hot water or fermentation , seasonal... Has info on fermenting dye pot from powder.  this also has various organic recipes fruit (depends) Backyarddyer sent me that last link ,
She has some posts on growing and natural dying.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Swallowtail Eggs

Swallowtail Eggs on Peach leaves.
Was reading a book and noticed a movement thru the window. A Swallowtail !!
Looked for camera ( couldnt find ), then just went out to watch. It keeps coming back to a
peach tree in a patio pot. Finally realize its laying eggs, skittering around , wings in constant flutter.
It comes towards me many times and around the peach. When it left found a few eggs. Beautiful tiny green jewels (June 18,2016). Will see if hatch, hopefully are "active". They are in full sun, hope isnt to hot there.
Wonder how long take to hatch.  Will try a side pic. Also saw the tiniest lizard today- wonder if a second spring? The young Ravens are around now.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

feels like live alone even though have my younger son in his 20's here also. Had decided to turn the radio on to hear weather or nice voices (might practice singing again ) and all sounded like noise. NPR was bad news, most music was loud and poundy. So turn it all off.... and realized the best music was listening to the birds sing. Just then a mockingbird. This week a new early morning bird have been hearing. ( Hearing a nice breeze is like the wind talking to me and the leaves and trees )