Sunday, July 10, 2011

A Hot and Sticky Ride, the Three Great Things ... & Pictures

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Sibilant song of rustling katydids
Daylilies setting the ditches on fire
Racing a dragonfly down the road

(P.S. The dragonfly won.)

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We had thunderstorms today, so I waited for the weather to clear before venturing out with Iris in the late afternoon.

The digital thermometer at the school on my way out of town read 96º. An hour and a half later, the thermometer at the factory on my way back into town read 90º. I think the real temp was somewhere in between, with humidity levels to match - but a strong southwest wind was blowing, which tempered the heat somewhat.

The flowers of summer are here. Crown vetch, an invasive but beautiful species, can be seen everywhere:

And wild phlox has replaced the Dame's Rocket which it greatly resembles:

Everywhere I go, I see feathery wild asparagus going to seed. All that produce, free for the picking every May, and I missed it!

Swallows in solemn convocation. I think the three on the lower right are planning to vote together.

Someone has a freshly-painted gate.

A "true" tiger lily (flower hanging down, with petals curling back upwards). This one caught my eye on a back road - the first one I've seen.

What I THOUGHT were tiger lilies ...

... are apparently Asiatic lilies. (Writing this blog is definitely advancing my floral education!) These are more common on the roadsides. Notice the bonus caterpillar in the upper right corner.

The young pine cones are maturing now:

And here's a favourite stretch of road. Curves ahead!

I park the bike to take pictures of the wheat, and this sign catches my eye (you can click on the picture to make it larger):

Inferior deer need not apply.

The wheat is ripening nicely in this warm weather ...

... giving meaning to the phrase "amber waves of grain".

A pleasant surprise for a cyclist: last Sunday this little road was faded, cracked and horridly bumpy. Sometime during the week it's gotten a facelift:

Smooth riding now.

Down the road, the corn is as high as an elephant's eye - or almost. It's really shooting up and just starting to tassel out.

Near the end of this road, I come across some of my black-eyed namesakes.

And around the bend, clumps of wild bergamot are cropping up everywhere. Aren't they pretty?

Wheat and corn and spacious skies. It's a beautiful area, even with the huge power lines. They were buzzing over my head as I took this picture.

I turn another corner, climb a small hill, and get ready for the rush of wind on the way down:

Whee! This is about as good as it gets in my neck of the woods. The road descends for about a mile - a rare chance to use my large chain ring.

A few miles further, and the ditches are simply orange with daylilies. So cheerful.

And the honeysuckle blossoms have given way to bright scarlet berries:

A very good ride, despite the sauna-like conditions. This is the weather we long for during the cold dark months of winter, and I'm not going to complain about it now that it's here!

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  1. I enjoy following you on your bike rides so many miles away. My flower (and bird) knowledge too has improved much with blogging. I love the lilies, none of those growing wild here.
    By the way, I'm now got that pesky song from Oklahoma playing in my head, thanks!

  2. Lovely, lovely post! What a beautiful place you live in. The flora is amazing.

  3. Ann - it's been stuck in my head too since yesterday, if that makes you feel any better. :)

    Thanks, Toffeeapple! It IS beautiful here.

  4. Lovely pictures!! The scenery looks amazing!!

  5. What lovely views and vegetation you have along the way! You've made me curious what my own lilies are... all over, but not hanging upside down and petals curved back. More like your Asiatic, but in a wide variety of colors.

    Yum! Asparagus! I missed out on ours, too.

    Every day on the elevator at work, people complain about too dry, too warm, too cold, too hot, too... you name it! Kind of annoying! Why do you live in Colorado if you can't handle the weather?!? :) (Although I morph into a complainer, too, when the wind blows and blows and blows!)

  6. Some amazing pictures - and the flowers, too - all very exotic by the standards of our lane! A very beautiful place to live.

    Pomona x


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