It's Shaping Up to Be A Good Year for Wildflowers

By early November, they began to appear. Since then, it seems like blooming ahead of schedule! Although I would prefer to see more grass on our place instead of ephemeral flowers, we haven't had a good wildflower season in the last 2-3 years. Late winter rains promoted cool season introduced grasses like rescue grass or English rye, which shaded out the wildflower seedings (and warm season grasses). But this year the time frame is different and so we are likely to have a good show. If soil moisture remains good and the spring doesn't heat up too fast, the blooms will start early and may las...   read full post »

posted on 1/14/2019

   

Another Cycle Begins: 2018 October Floods

Jack’s Paw-Paw used to say, “After a drought in Texas, there always comes a flood”. That is sure true for this October. In my last report late in September we had received over seven inches of much needed rain. Then on October 18, we had over 12 inches, which left us stranded at ...   read full post »

posted on 12/7/2018

   

Hotter Than Ever: Summer of 2018 in Central Texas

By mid-July, the woodlands were completely still and silent, except for the occasional harsh call of a crow in flight. It was even too hot for the familiar summer background chorus of cicadas to feel like making noise. I have been silent, too, on these pages. For what is there to say about anothe...   read full post »

posted on 9/25/2018

   

Every Year is Different

An hour before dawn on January 31st, I waited, bundled in a lawn chair, on the front porch for the eclipse of the “ super blue blood moon” to begin. Some had called this special celestial event “the perfect trifecta” of the moon, for it happened to be both the second full mo...   read full post »

posted on 3/29/2018

   

Yellow is the Color of Western Soapberry

We started seeing forming golden bowers for us to walk beneath. Soapberries are among the more drought tolerant of our trees. As our climate continues to warm up and dry out, will they become as prominent here as they are in places farther west? We won’t remove them for now, as oak wilt is st...   read full post »

posted on 11/7/2017

   

What Does It Take to Become a Post Oak Tree?

The mighty post oak (Quercus stellata) is my favorite tree. I never tire of admiring its sturdy trunk and rugged, muscular branching, especially in winter. The deep, furrowed bark, irregular arching crown, and dense foliage give this long-lived tree a distinct and dignified character. Post oaks belo...   read full post »

posted on 8/11/2017

   

What I Learned from my TPWD Biologist

Like many other new landowners, in the early years of owning our place in SW Llano County, I eagerly attended every workshop, field day and webinar in the region to learn as much as possible. As we began the great adventure of restoring our land, most of these educational experiences introduced me t...   read full post »

posted on 7/30/2017

< previous posts