Adventures

A Fall Scramble, Part II: Thar She Blows (Whatever The Heck That Means)

The human female is becoming a bit concerned because she hasn’t seen any of her rare flowers  yet.  I think it is one of those things, though, that you have to see the first one, and then, once your eye is trained, you start to see them everywhere.

Augh!  Now she’s squealing abominably.  I suppose that means she’s spotted some.  Yes, there they are, hiding in the tall grass.

agalinis-grass

Sigyn says she has learned how to tell the rare ones from the common ones.  The flowers can be the same color on both, but the common ones have wider leaves, and the flowers have almost no stalk at all.  It’s an over-all thickish sort of plant.

agalinis-het

The rare ones have very narrow leaves and long flower stalks, so that the whole plant is open and airy, sort of tricky to spot if it’s not in flower.

Agalinis-nav

There are some differences in the flowers, too, but you have to be as big a plant nerd as the human female to understand.  I don’t pretend to, nor do I listen when she rattles on and on about “anther placement” and “calyx sinuses” and “stigma color.”  As  Future Ruler of Midgard, such details are beneath my notice.  I’ll have minions for that.

Odin’s eyepatch! Now that she’s spotted them, the human female now proposes to walk over every inch of the outcrop and count the rare plants.  I don’t know whether to hope that there aren’t very many this year so that this will all be over quickly, or to hope that the rare plant is having a good year, even knowing that it will mean listening to the idiot woman try to remember what comes after “threety-eleven.”

This is, unfortunately, going to involve some clambering.  Sigyn insists on doing it all herself.

need-a-hand

But my love, would you not appreciate a magical boost?  Maybe just a little one?

(a bit later)

We have reached the top and completed our survey, having counted about one hundred plants, which makes this a good-ish year, though not a great one.  Now we are free to look about at other members of the flora.

This wafer-ash is also known as hop tree, presumably because of the flat fruits.  (Apparently someone thought it looked like beer-brewing hops and the name stuck.  I don’t see it myself.)

ptelea

It is very good for dangling, though the foliage is looking rather tattered.  The human female says this tree is a relative of oranges and lemons and, as such, is considered  yummy by the giant swallowtail caterpillar.  Sigyn says she would like to see one of those caterpillars.  However, they are camouflaged to look like bird droppings, and I’ve no real desire to go poking piles of bird poop to see which ones are wiggly and have legs.

But here is a good one for you, love!  (No poop-poking required!)

swallowtail-thelesperma

I actually learned this one because it has such marvelous horns.  It is the larval stage of the pipevine swallowtail.  It ought to be munching on pipevine; I’ve no idea what it thinks it is doing with this greenthread.

There really is a splendid view from up here.  I can see a good portion of the county, though the removal of a few junipers would improve the vista even more.

topview

Sigyn and the human female are still oohing and aahing and speaking in slanty names, enthusing over fall favorites such as this blue sage.

salvia azurea

I, on the other hand, propose to divest myself of my hot and heavy (though noble!) helmet and relax on this pat of moss while they fossick about.

sleepnumbermoss

Who knows?  I might even doze.  Being magnificent and knowledgeable about caterpillars is hard work. Wake me when it is time to go home.

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A Fall Scramble, Part I: Here We Are Again

It is Autumn here in the northern part of Midgard–or at least, that’s what the calendar says.  I’ve been tinkering with the weather, alternating hot and cold days so that everyone has the sniffles and no one knows what to wear or what to serve for dinner.  Woolly hat or shorts and flip-flops?  Cool salad or hearty stew!  Ehehehehe!  The mortals are all cOnFUseD and there’s no end to the see-sawing in sight.

But, by the calendar, the rare plant that the human female discovered, and which she keeps an eye on, ought to be blooming.  She’s grabbed her boots and sunscreen and insect repellent and is heading for the outcrop in the next county over where the plant is to be found— if it’s up.  It is one of my warm days, and I could certainly do without being cooped up in the car with the human female for twenty minutes each way, but Sigyn really, really likes “botanizing,” so she is going.  And if Sigyn is going, I am going, because I don’t trust the human female in the field one tiny little bit.  With me along, there’s a much better chance that my sweetie comes home in one smiling piece.

(laterish)

And here we are at what the human female calls, “an outcropping of calcareous Oligocene sandstone of the Oakville formation” and what I call, “a tilty chunk of inconvenient climbiness.”

The first plant to greet us is the very conspicuous, electric blue dayflower.  It’s fairly common in this part of Midgard.  There are even some back at the house.

dayflower

They look better out here than coming up around the compost heap, though.

The human female is checking to see if the “usual suspect” plants are up where they normally are.  The redwhisker clammy-weed is right where it is every year.  The bright sun is washing out the pale pink of the petals and the bright red of the stamens.

cleome

It really is very sticky to the touch.  Sigyn, be careful as you go—I don’t know how well the sticky comes out of red velvet.

Ugh.  It really is uncomfortably warm and bright today.

hotouthere

Here is a plant I don’t recall seeing out here before.  Look at the fat, funny leaves!  The human female says it’s a cousin of the moss roses that people grow in pots.

portulaca-2

Step into the voluminous shade the human female is casting, and let us see if we can get a better photo.

portulaca

Those really are tiny flowers!  Sadly, too small for Sigyn to try on as a hat.

Great Frigga’s hairpins!  If you thought that was a tiny flower, dearest, come look at this one!

heliotropium-tenellum

Heliotropium tenellum.”  It just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?

This one’s not much bigger.  It’s one of the broomweeds, the human female says, either Gutierrezia texana or Amphichyris dracunculoides.

broomweed

I’m of the opinion that if she’s going to call herself a botanist, she should KNOW which one it is.  She’s making noises about tiny “pappus” this and “receptacle” that and saying that she needs to look at various bits under a microscope.  Flimsy excuses, woman, and if you need a microscope, you bring it on your various traipse-alongs, because I am not going to tote it for you.  Nor will I waste my magic summoning something you should have thought of in the first place.  Besides, I think you make up all those slanty, sciency names anyhow.

Time for some climbing!  Autumn is definitely the season for yellow daisy-family things, and here is another.  If you can believe the human female, it is part of the whole golden aster mish-mash, and it goes by the improbable name of Heterotheca subaxillaris.   The common name, camphorweed, is much less of a mouthful.

heterotheca

Sigyn, after sniffing its gland-dotted foliage, confirms that it does, in fact, smell a little granny’s-closety.

Stand over there next to that pale purple one, my love.

ruellia

Look at that!  The flowers are more than a Sigyn long!  If it didn’t have just the one blossom, I would pick it for you and make you the pointiest hat ever!

Norns’ nighties!  Are we really only halfway up?  This hill goes on forever.

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Revenge of the Flora, Part 25: Bloopers and Out-takes

Never a dull moment with this cast!

seed packet topple

“Oops!  Hee hee hee hee!”

sunflower down1

“Cut!”

sunflower down2

“Look, if I can act in this silly bonnet, you can deal with the tennis shoes.”

rosebear down

“Now who’s clumsy?  Eh? Eh?”

now sigyn is down

“Hee hee hee hee!  Ow.”

bananabear down

“Dude just slipped on his own peel!”

celery down

“Whooooooooaaa!”  Thud.

hawkeye-what

“Hawkeye–did you come to work drunk today?”

“Shut it, Trash Panda.”

helmet-fu

“Wardrobe!”

hulk-down

“Hulk crash, drop puny cornbear!”

spidey hanging

“I’m, uh, dangling, here.  Little push?”

“Sorry.  Too busy being dead.”

all fall down

“Ashes, ashes, we all fall DOWN!”

–THE END!  THANKS FOR WATCHING!!–

 

Revenge of the Flora, Part 24: Behind the Scenes

Shenanigans from the set of Revenge of the Flora.

“Why is everything a joke to you?”

“Hello?  Billionaire, Genius, Playboy, Philanthropist, and Smart Ass!

87-bts-stevetony

Steve and Tony arguing about dialogue in an early version of the script.

……

“Loki, you need to talk to Wardrobe.  Your cloak is looking a little the worse for wear, and we haven’t even shot the battle scenes yet.”

“Tell me about it.  The budget on this picture is laughable.  Did you notice that no one has a costume change?”

88-bts-odinsons

……

Over in Hair and Makeup:

“You have such pretty hair, Sigyn.”

“Thanks.  I like what you’ve done with yours, too.”

“I’m toying with the idea of changing my bow to in front of my other ear.  What do you guys think?”

“Bold move.”  “Go for it.”

89-bts-widow-sigyn

……

“Good work,  young man.  Your reflexes are becoming even faster.”

“Thanks, Your Highness.”

bts-spidey-sparring

T’Challa and Spider-Man keep in top form with a little sparring between takes.

…..

Shooting the action sequences against the green screen:

94-bts-loki-greenscreen

“Pew! Pew! Pew!  Zap!”

“We’ll add the sound effects in post-production, Loki.”

……

95-bts-thor-greenscreen

“Watch out down-set!  I am going to throw Mjolnir now, and this is the heavy copy!”

…..

“Cut!”

96-bts-spidey greenscreen
“¡sʎnƃ ‘uıɐƃɐ sıɥʇ ʎɹʇ ǝɯ ʇǝן ¿ı ɯɐ ‘ǝuǝɔs sıɥʇ uı uʍop ǝpısdn ǝq oʇ pǝsoddns ʇou ɯ,ı  ¡ʎɹɹos  ˙ʇooɥs„

…..

Meanwhile, over in Props…

“Sorry, guys.  You’re never getting these back!”

90-bts-loki-shield-hammer