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Pigeons on the Grass

I’ve been fighting a losing battle lately at my birdfeeders. I have two. One has thistle seed and is favored by housefinches and goldfinches. At this time of year it gets light traffic, since the finches much prefer the fresh seed available from the many black-eyed susans and coneflowers in my garden. I know they’ll . . . → Read More: Pigeons on the Grass

Eggs from Pet Chickens

It seems almost every cultural phenomenon inspires a reaction against it. Now that so many of us get a majority of our calories from fast food or from venti frappucinos slurped in our cars, I’m reading more and more pleas for people to get back in touch with where their food comes from. Often this comes with a suggestion to support your local farmers market, or to try growing a few of your own vegetables. Earlier this summer I visited friends who are taking that idea a step further and raising their own chickens for eggs. . . . → Read More: Eggs from Pet Chickens

The World’s Loneliest Cicada

This is a photo of the world’s loneliest cicada. How do I know? This photo was taken on May 28, 2005. He missed the hatchout of the rest of the Brood X cicadas by a whole year.

In 2004, from mid-May until the end of June, we were inundated by the 17-year cicadas from . . . → Read More: The World’s Loneliest Cicada

Doing Dishes by Hand

While my temperamental dishwashing machine has sat idle for a few weeks, I’ve made some valuable discoveries. Against all my expectations I’ve found a strange satisfaction and even pleasure in doing the dishes by hand. . . . → Read More: Doing Dishes by Hand

Heirloom Tomatoes Are a Treasure

One of the advantages of living in the suburbs is that I finally have enough space for a small vegetable garden. Back when I was living in D.C., I had only a tiny postage stamp in front of my townhouse, and considered myself lucky to have that. Now I have a space ten by . . . → Read More: Heirloom Tomatoes Are a Treasure

Mulberry Tree in Autumn

I think you’ll agree, it deserves to live.

Mulberry Jam?

In front of my house, in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., is an old and distinguished-looking black mulberry tree. It’s probably about fifty years old, which makes it about the same age as my house, and I think it must be a miracle the tree has survived this long. Everyone who’s ever looked at it . . . → Read More: Mulberry Jam?