Our Natural Places

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Header Image: Burmarigold or Smooth Beggartick (Bidens laevis) Standing by the side of the road in the dark. Hands cupping our ears. Straining for the sounds of the night. “Whip, whip, whip, whip!” The loud call accompanied the sound of flapping wings passing us as an Eastern Whip-poor-will flew along with mouth open wide to inhale insects hovering above the sandy stretch of road. Ten minutes later, the surprisingly soft trill of… Read More

Header Image: Sunset “To the orange grove, right?” I am so predictable. At the time I signed the contract over 50 years ago, I suspected Gini could read my mind. That fact has been confirmed again and again over the past five decades. When asked if she would like to ride with me around 3:30 p.m., she instantly knew where I intended to go. Our destination is about 40 minutes away and… Read More

My Dad was a builder of homes. Much like any kid, I valued those days I rode along in the pick-up truck to a job site. The sights, sounds and smells of a new house being built can be pretty heady stuff for an eight-year old. I didn’t know it at the time, of course, but by far the most significant part of the experience was time spent with my Father. On… Read More

Header Image: Sandhill Cranes Thank goodness we have venues nearby where we can travel less than ten minutes and enjoy birds, blooms and bugs! If we had to plan for a long drive, we might “accidentally” oversleep. Our unscientific research reveals that sunrise and the early birds wait for no birder. One of our current favorite patches is Tenoroc Public Use Area. It is near the city of Lakeland in central-west Florida… Read More

Header Image: Great Egret Our current summer has caused childhood memories to flood my conscience lately. It is hot. I walk barefooted to the mailbox and as I cross the concrete driveway, my pace quickens as it seems I’m walking in a frying pan. As a kid, my feet were tough enough to walk on sandspurs without ill effect. A dish of ice cream last night (yes, I know, apparently verboten at… Read More