What I do not admire is a half-eaten mouse body left outside the bedroom door (on the carpet) to be found in the morning when I haven't been sufficiently caffeinated. Is this the mouse under the stove or another? I have no idea and I'm not sure I want the household killing machines to provide an explanation. Just as I really don't want to investigate what sounded like 'death squeals' in the crawl space over my office. That would presumably be a snake killing a mouse. I like snakes as a rule, but I hesitate to go crawling about in an attic looking for either a mouse nest (or several) or a snake (or two). It was bad enough two years ago when we heard them slithering along the ceiling and the Dude went up to find a couple of snakes intertwined and up to, well, Snake Sex.
Now about that mouse under the stove...one might ask (or not) how I know there's one under there. On Saturday, G was working on our new deck boards and E came out to show him a mouse she was holding by the tail. One of the cats had presented it to her, Rainbow Tom as a matter of fact, and E was very proud of him. G does not do snakes or mice, so he went and got the Dude. In the transference of the mouse by its tail between E and the Dude, it became evident that when you drop a mouse on the floor it might still be alive. And it might run under the stove.
So this half-eaten delight could have been the mouse under the stove. One can only hope. Or it could have been a new mouse brought in from outside. At this time of year, I have a tendency to leave the door open for cats to wander in and out. Otherwise, they drive me nuts asking me to open the door so they can wander in and out.
Irises are ephemeral. It's one of the reasons I love them. And yet, in a dryish year, you get an incredible display for several weeks. Here are two shots of the large v-shaped bed we added along our driveway. The chocolate irises were cast-offs from my parents' apt complex in DC. My dad planted them many years ago.
different angle, same bed
All of the light blue irises in that bed were divided out of this circle in the lawn and another we emptied as it was basically under a tree at this point. They were created many years ago and never divided. One hundred rhizomes were taken out and put 50 to a side with the chocolate in the middle. A couple of years later, we're up to our ears in blue irises again. And I'm not a fan of the classic blue. They're hardier than the hybrids, but not something I sigh over. We'll be digging and dividing in late July.
Down by the chickens we have a rectangular bed of purchased irises. These were purchased from a little old lady's garden and they seem to have had some difficulty identifying them because some are definitely NOT what I purchased. This is their second year blooming and I spent time yesterday trying to match them up to photos from the internet of the varieties I supposedly purchased. In another year, we'll segregate some out to their own circle in the lawn. Two colors at a time.
Last year when I attempted these photos, my father ended up giving me a new digital camera for my birthday (timely to this posting). It still takes nice photos, doesn't it?