This morning at oh dark thirty when I began my morning chore of watering the yards, I thought it would be just another beautiful early time to meditate and see what had changed in the realm of growing plants. But I was very wrong.
I watered in the front yard where we have cucumbers, okra, pumpkins in the yard, new spanish lavender by the front gate and most of my house plants have taken up residence for the summer. The pregnant onion has gone a little nutz again this year and not only is covered with baby onions but has set out another 3 foot long stem with an amazing blossom starting. The Goddess plant is getting new leaves and will set her blossoms by the end of July. The night blooming cereus has the tiny beginnings of it's gardenia smelling blooms to dazzle us one evening in mid July.
I will have a post around mid July to show you the update on the front porch, I promise....not enough cool hours in the day to get everything done. It was 106 degrees day before yesterday and is to be "just" 100 today.
Anyway, I made my way to the back yard area where we planted the new white fleshed peach tree, which is doing so well. Joe attempted to start a new section of lawn near the tree, but the weeds got ahead of him and now we have a mini jungle of the most interesting green and red plants with a side order of grass seedlings. I water them anyway so as to keep the new seedling going.
Right in the middle of the non lawn I looked down and there was the sweetest thing I have seen in a while. A newly hatched baby turtle. He/she is so little as compared to the area in which she was scurrying. I picked her up (I'm hoping she's a girl, goodness knows we have a bunch of boys and one mama turtle here after Odin, bless his doggie heart, went off the deep end and started to chew and maim the turtles).
Little one's shell is still relatively rubbery which means she is a fall baby. She over wintered already out of her shell but not out of her hatch hole. As you can see she has a super long tale and on her little belly is the remnants of the egg sack albeit hardened to her shell and her egg beak is still intact. If she was this years baby she would be much more rubbery, egg sack would be more pliable and she would be a little smaller but heavier. Isn't she adorable????
So I thought, hey I know where the older babies hang out and went and got a two year old and a 3 year old to show you the difference. Bribery works with these little ones already. I can walk out with cantaloupe, strawberries, banana or canned dog food and I am like the Piped Piper of the back yard. A turtle works for food by sight...bugs....blossoms...your toes if you aren't watching and mostly by smell. And I am a combo of both. They see me and know it will be free handouts by the porch swing after a great drink of water from me as I travel the flower beds with the hose.
The two year old is so tame and sweet. Doesn't mind being picked up and fed. This one is one of three still with us and without marks from being chewed. I think they were small enough that they laid low and weren't worth Odin's time. GK named this trio Foot, Heart and Brain because of markings on their under shells.
The bigger one is a pistol. We didn't even know of her existence until this year. So that means she's a very good hider. Stealth is her name and she doesn't know that freebees are the name of the game, so she struggles and pees. She has the most amazing eyes. I know who her mother was just based on the glorious light flecked eyes and pattern on her back. Her mother is one that did not survive Odin's meltdown. My old guy Pig did but he looks like the wreck of the Hesperus and walks with a decided limp.
I was very fearful that we wouldn't have any babies this year. I hadn't see any during the early fall before they hibernate and I am a fatalist and thought that my sweet colony of "turtliedurds" had been devoured. I'm like that. I always steady myself for the worse. GK has been rattling the bushes, looking for signs of new ones for a couple of weeks with no luck. This little one must had just recently decided to come out and play.......at last.
And that is why today is such a joy. I already knew we had at least 5 small ones to carry on the "herd" but now there are babies.....are ya listening????? I have at least one baby turtle stomping around in the backyard. I'm a happy olde broad.
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