Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Forgotten Healing Secrets of Nature

Forgotten Healing Secrets of Nature

'my creeky bones
feel young again watching
old man river run'

Nature is our mother.  She cares for us and has always freely given us the secrets of healing.

Since the first humans walked the earth nature has been there sharing her healing powers with all life.

As a mother provides for her children, nature has from the first African plains' Australopithecus species four million years ago, given all life the necessities for a whole, healthy and fulfilled existence. 

During our nomadic existences communication with nature was inherently accepted as common place.  Through sight, sound, scents, tastes, touch and other senses humans 'listened' to earth sounds and communication of natural forces.  We were 'in-touch' and we were a part of all that surrounded us.  Just as a four legged creature eats grasses when sick, we humans too would turn to plants and substances of the earth and space when in need of healing.  This was the nomadic way of life for millions of years on our planet.

However with the advent of agrarian and then industrial lifestyles we gradually turned from being one with our source of being to thinking of human existence in a dualistic sense, one where we humans were separate and even 'better' than nature.  We forgot how to communicate with the original source of healing. 

Today humans live mostly alienated from that which we evolved.  Thanks to the many mythologies molding our thought processes since childhood humans have been trained to relegate the natural world to a chore, like mowing the lawn. We take for granted the earth around us.  We wait for something 'better' as the grass is always greener proverb suggests.

We no longer value the advice of the natural world.  Instead our generation understands mostly vibrations, noises and techno-sensual stimulations of the concrete urban jungle.

I think some of our high technology is wonderful.  The internet has expanded my understanding of the cosmos.  My mechanical heart valve and Dacron aorta have given me a chance at life where without I would not be alive today.

Yet it wasn't until I discovered the power of our forgotten communications with nature that I truly felt healed.

My body bionics kept me alive.  Communion with nature gave me true life.

Nature has taught me slowly.  She lured me into her wilds shortly after my second open thoracic event.  That day Judy and I sat under a massive live oak growing in a coastal hammock and I could literally feel rejuvenating power fill my body.

Over the years since Judy and I have tried to leave the house for the forests, beaches and swamps on a daily basis for healing purposes.  We may go out fatigued but always come back invigorated, infused with powerful communion.

Trying to think analytically after being on heart lung bypass can be at best tricky.  My brain was subjected to embolistic events during the process according to the neurologist.  So my explanation of how nature communicates these forgotten healing powers may sound simplistic or confusing. 

These more real than esoteric nature connections are powerful though.  And they have healed me in so many ways.  Even though the doctors still, to this day, tell me they are surprised I am alive.

Nature communicates her healing power through all of our known senses and then through others senses we have a hard time explaining. I think of this as both physiological and quantum communications similar to in the movie Avatar, connection with the Tree of Souls.

My journey of healing originated in a baptism of nature's energies.

When I am hiking in the wilds come the winds, the sunshine, the rains and earth connections. 

Surrounding me too are healing networks and complexities of an array of life forms.

There exist so many healing synapses with mother nature that I could fill a book with describing them all.

Some of the most primal but powerful are those connections formed from my interactions with water.

Many of my hikes are up in the beach dunes.  Not only is sand walking a healthy workout but the waves crashing into the seashore fill me with subconscious remembrances of nine months nurture, surrounded by water.  And I am reminded all life came from water.  Many even say 'water is life'.

Water imparts her healing powers with many approaches.  A gentle rain soothes while a hard rain cools, irrigates and gives pause to urban background static.  Fog inspires my imagination; snow cleanses and trickling creeks sing soothing music to my heart. 

But in front of the screen I lose these nature associations.  Note to self - spending nature time is investment in health so take the time to do it!

I've just scratched the surface of communication with nature here.

Hopefully we can explore other dimensions of communication with the natural world in future posts.  I'd like to examine how we interact with plants, with the earth, with the cosmos, water, fire, animals. 

My brain intuitively understands the truths of the Tree of Souls.

My challenge will be to figure out how to assign the appropriate words into sentences that share accurately the forgotten secrets of communication with nature we all have been given.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Send Off for Jerome, Aortic Dissection Warrior

Jerome, my friend, you fought a good fight and kept the faith.  You defied the odds for a long time.  You inspired me to move forward each day.  Now you rest.

Today's post is a tribute to a friend.  His name is Jerome and he lived just outside Gainesville, Florida.  Jerome endured his aortic dissection (AD) in 2012, about a year after I had mine.  During his dissection and repair surgery he became a paraplegic due to strokes.

Although neither of us new each other at the time, Jerome and I both spent time researching aortic dissection on the internet.  Soon thereafter, Jerome contacted Dr. Peter Tsai of Aortic Warriors, one of the original founders of the world wide aortic awareness AD movement and the creator of September Aortic Awareness campaign.  

Dr. Tsai sent me an email.  Dr. Tsai had read a few of my AD posts and asked if I'd contact Jerome since we were both in Florida.  I called Jerome and exchanged emails.  Jerome and I talked or emailed every day, encouraging one another through the challenges of dissection life until yesterday when he passed away.

Jerome was a young man still, in his 60s.  He made the most of each day, despite being confined to a wheelchair and living alone.

He would take his scooter, ride out to the backyard fence and feed carrots to his neighbor's horse most days, and watch old westerns on television.

When aortic dissection occurs the inner lining or our body's major artery tears apart, leaving the vessel weakened.  Over time the weakness results in the aorta dilating and eventually leaking away the blood that our heart is pumping.

Jerome was an inspiration to me because he was challenged even more so physically than I.  Fortunately after my dissection I could still walk, though it took some relearning.  Seeing another human survive in spite of circumstances more dire than my own made me realize that, yes, I can and will do this.  Thank you my friend, for giving me this gift.

Jerome would regularly say, 'carry on, enjoy every moment you have, no matter all the sh*t that is happening'.

He would also want me to encourage others to be screened for aortic aneurysms and vascular health.

Here are a few excerpts of the emails Jerome shared with me over the years.

Sept 3, 2019 

Kevin, yes nasty way to start a day, had my cereal, and several cups of coffee and several oatmeal  cranberry walnut cookies and-a cinnamon raisin bagel and-thinking of asking VA if they have a standing grab bar I can get them to install next to the right side of my living room lounge that I might use to get myself off the floor if I am down like that for future use rather then calling 911. I will see how that goes. I use to to be able to pull myself up on lounge-using my good right hand and pulling on right  arm rest but when I tried last night it feels like I might pull arm rest off and become a useless futile effort. Will check into this and see.

Enjoy your day, Jerome.

Geeez Jerome, what a way to start the day.  I am sorry you had to endure that but am glad you did not break any bones or do damage to your body.  That is a shock though for sure.  Good thing you had your phone handy too.  Yes, what a life we lead.  Trying it is.  Here's to a better day for both of us.  Kev

Kevin, Morning to you. I just had to call 911 because I slipped out of my recliner when I tried to reconnect the control remote to its cable  that had-come undone, and once I was on the floor I can’t get back up so had to call for a lift assist. What a life I have to lead, but I am still alive right.everything is a struggle , but somehow we just keep going, Day after day after day.
Yes coffee time soon, maybe sooner for me.enjoy, Jerome.

Aug 17 2019
Kevin, yes rained here on and off all day as well. . I went over to feed treats to the horse and my scooter got stuck in the soil next to the fence so I had to slide off-seat stand on ground in water next to left side of scooter and reach down with my right good hand and lift up back of scooter out of rut it had wallowed out with rear idler balance wheels and reset onto ground out of rut. Then I had to just throw the apple slices and carrot over fence onto ground for horse. I hope he was able to get them out of mud and water. Then I just fast forwarded out of area and back onto driveway and home.I have   to find another part of fence where I won’t find it so soggy to be able to hand feed horse.i had my home phone with me and was almost tempted to call for fire rescue paramedics, but said to myself Let’s try this one more time to lift scooter out of rut. So it worked and didn’t have to call, thankfully!

Yes my Friend the night is here and coffee time on the horizon. 
The roofers have my roof weathered in with protective felt and polyurethane for weekend and will be back Monday to finish up . So hopefully all turns out good on that, no leaks do I see anywhere so good.

You take care my Friend and have a good night. Jerome.

April 17, 2019
Kevin, yes my CNA sweep up remaining glass for me them mopped up the floors because I had blood all over the place and had me take a shower to get dried off blood so she could see where to put bandaids on me. Yes I am the problem child for sure, but I did survive as you and I know how to do. Rest of day was try and take it easy day but you know how that sometimes goes because we still need to get things done that only we know how we want them done , so we struggle till we get thru our problems. 

You take care my friend and enjoy your night . Coffee soon, Jerome.

Gheez Jerome what a sucky way to start the day  I am sorry for you.  You may be in a wheel chair and that does suck but I will tell you that you are an ongoing inspiration to me.  I look forward to our communications because I feel you are one of the few people who understand what this life with dissection challenges is truly like.  My day was ok, I can't remember all I did but go for a short walk and stop by Harbor Freight for some zip ties for the chicken coop.  Its not even 7 pm here CST and I am already ready for bed.  The weather was balmy here today but we've got some strong storms coming in tomorrow.  Hope your CNA got the glass up and bandaged up your foot.  Once again night is upon us and we are still in the realm of the conscious.  You rest well if that is possible.  Tomorrow the weekend is almost here.  Kev

Kevin, I may have made it thru the night but I didn’t make it thru this morning , I was unloading the dishwasher and a glass baking pan slipped and shattered all overthe floor , cut my feet several times, blood all over floor and finally got most of glass picked up, will let my CNA sweep and mop the remaining amount, what a chore from wheelchair and one hand and foot usage,  this is not the first time this has happened to me and am sure not the last. Bad day start for sure.
Hope yours is better then mine, Jerome.

December 14, 2018
Kevin, yes, you did have a bastardized day with your candy bar. Mine was no better, forgetting to turn off lights as I leave the rooms and having to go back and do so. Then as I clean coffee pot out tonight I had water vinegar and baking soda spill on floor and made a mess to clean up, damn near slipped on my ass catching myself falling back into wheelchair luckily, what a life of laughs we-give others to laugh at! For sure but not us laughing at. We are clowns on the run just trying to survive day to day, but at least we are still surviving my friend, you hang in there as I will-on my end, so I am happy for that and only ran out to get my mail and send a bill outgoing to box. 

Take care my friend and and enjoy, Jerome.

Long day Jerome. Rainy and overcast making for a dreary day. Went to the library then to the health food store. Bought some groceries including a chocolate bar. Got back in my the truck and looked for the chocolate bar but wasn’t in the bag. Looked again and no chocolate bar. Wife looked no chocolate bar so I went back in with receipt and told them they didn’t put the chocolate bar in the bag. They thought that was strange but gave me another one anyway. Got home and unloaded bag and there were two chocolate bars in the bag. But we’d taken everything out of the bag back at the store looking for the first bar. Sometimes Jerome I think I’m losing it. Or at least slowing down. Sheeez. I still try and keep going but it doesn’t seem like it’s getting any easier.  Hope your Friday was ok. You should be getting this rain soon. Kevin

October 26, 2018

Kevin, Morning to you, I am having much difficulty just taking my catnaps let alone sleep, due to that cyst on my upper back just above chest. I called my primary office yesterday and nurse tells me the primary is out for several days and will check if on call  doctor will be available to relieve it in morning of next couple of days outside normal  prior scheduled patients but also have to be able to put in my file to be able to get me my transportation  to get in to see on call doctor at time available, and was told if pain gets to unbearable to come into ER. It is getting very close because I may have to wait until next week, but then that brings up the cost  ambulance service to get me there, when I broke my hip and went to VA ER the ambulance bill was $820which I never understood why so much and 
LVA wouldn’t pay any of it and I was only able to get Medicare to pay $540 and I had to pay rest. So much for the assistance of all that are supposed to assist us as we get older!
And as for my getting around in house in wheelchair I can’t carry  an.thing if I was using my walker, so don’t have a choice and then outside one handed use of wheelchair  I won’t be able to get up door entrance ramps and same into garage to use washer and dryer or put garbage in garbage can so have to use scooter. So yes difficult but only way I can do things. Our lives are just way to ***ked up and very complicated with constant struggles daily, but then the question becomes what is the alternative, Death which neither of us wants to go down that road. Boils down to must do them to survive or go into nursing home, take care my friend and enjoy your day.

Friday, October 26, 2018, 
Body sore and stuff like a cadaver today. Jerome. I don’t see how you can do what you do being in wheelchair. This stuff sucks.  Our weekend begins. Today. Enjoy yours. Kev

September 23, 2019
Kevin, Morning back at you. I envy that you are still capable to physically deal with those type of home repairs and drive a car, but I Have unwillingly accepted these facts that I can no longer engage in, but the cards were dealt to me in the order to which they came and I have to play the hand unfortunately I received with the best knowledge I have left to try and finish the game to the end.

Enjoy your day and still catnapping here And drinking my coffee and in a couple of hours will go attempt to see horse to feed him his treats. Later, Jerome.

Monday, September 23, 2019, 
Good morning Jerome.  Happy Monday.  I'm feeling a bit sleepy this morning which is normal for me, probably a carry over of monday mornings before dissection when I was trying to solve all of the problems around me in rapid succession.  Seems like I can't focus on what I'm doing then I move on to the next thing without finishing the first and end up getting nothing done.  Just the body care in the morning seems overwhelming sometimes, like brushing teeth, making coffee, taking medications, making bed, etc... is overwhelming.    I ordered a hot water heater to be delivered tomorrow.  The lightening strike we had a month ago hit our hot water heater and it has not been working fully even though I tried to get it to work, replacing elements, etc... So that will be a huge challenge for me even though it is an on demand wall mount heater and not too heavy.  I just will need to cut the water off to the house and remove the old unit and then replace with the new unit.  So today I think I'll take it easy.  Might sit in the sun this morning and soak up some rays.  Hope your weekend was good and you have an excellent Monday.  We just keep on going don't we.  Best, Kevin

Sept 25 2019

Kevin yes making  another day from the last. , yes, I get the downs as well my Friend, most of the time, this s*it we go thru  every day a new or more complex struggle, I guess we were the chosen ones, you and I  and a few others, because others couldn’t endure what we have been thru or were weaker then us.

Don’t mean to put them down either but we were just lucky enough to survive and others were not as lucky. I love you my friend you are an inspiration in making my days move from one to the next.you take care and as you say coffee time soon on the horizon, Jerome.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019, 

What kind of steaks Jerome?  They sound good. I’m feeling down tonight for no special reason I just get this way occasionally it’s feeling sorry for myself. Hey coffee time will be here soon though. First we gotta do this night thing though. You rest well and tomorrow is another day as Scarlet says. Kevin

I am so glad I had the privilege of getting to know Jerome.  He'd tell me to move on and enjoy the day I've been given.

And as he'd suggest, I am encouraging whoever reads this to schedule a checkup with your cardiologist and discuss dissection, aneurysms and your aortic health.  Remember, everything is good until it isn't.

Finally read more about aortic dissection and Ritter Rules on the John Ritter Foundation and Aortic Warriors websites.

RIP buddy.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Florida Nature Poetry & Art, La Mar & a Cup of Tea

Monday Nature Verse - La Mar & Cup of Tea
Florida Nature Haiku-Senryu by Kevin Songer
rumbling storm vibrates
oceanfront window panes
and my cup of tea

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Florida Nature Poetry & Art, Monarch Butterfly’s migratory flight across the gulf

 Florida nature poetry for Wednesday, Monarch Butterfly’s migratory flight across the gulf.
Monarch butterfly feeds in preparation for it's winter migratory flight across the
one last nectar sip
as kaleidoscope gathers
over the shoreline
nature's refinement
eight hundred miles cross the gulf
waves swallow many
the strongest survive
maybe luckiest rest in
oyamel fir trees

#monarch #butterfly #arttherapy #pensacolaart #pensacola #biglagoonstatepark #floridastateparks #naturepoetry #haiku #poetry #floridanature #nature

Florida Nature Art & Verse (Haiku), Fragrant Water Lily

Tuesday nature poetry, Fragrant water lily, Nymphaea odorata
Florida Nature Haiku & Art, Fragrant Water Lily by Kevin Songer
sweeter scent none else
shallow blue fishing spot
blooms bugs and bass

lazy kayaking
lily pads circle round and round
floating two eyed log

Monday, October 21, 2019

Florida Nature Poetry & Art, Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

Florida nature poetry for Monday, Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

Florida Nature Poetry & Art, Purple Coneflower by Kevin Songer
too many’s a crowd
genetic diversity
is survival’s key
purple coneflower
displays its finest array
intently seeking
long distant bee for random
cross pollination
Florida field of Echinacea purpurea, Purple Coneflower by Kevin Songer
Purple coneflower depends on long distance bees to spread pollen across hectares, enhancing genetic biodiversity.  In turn, bees profit from Echinacea's nectar sustenance. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Florida Native Plant & Wildflower Poetry, Buttonbush, Cephalanthus occidentalis

Florida Native Plant & Wildflower Poetry, Buttonbush, Cephalanthus occidentalis
Florida Nature Haiku Poetry, Buttonbush, Cephalanthus occidentalis
slough bush quiet rustle 
loud cicadas hush as wood
duck leaves her nest,
gliding across still pond,
below bees busy with sweet
buttonbush blooms

#floridanativeplants #florida #pensacola #pensacolaart #arttherapy #haiku #buttonbush #wildflowers #poetry #natureart #cephalanthus #wetlands #waterbirds  #swamplife #pollinators #bees 

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Florida Living Wall and Green Roof Plants, Nature Found

Some of my best learning experiences with green roof and living wall plants come from Mother Nature.
Florida Living Wall & Green Roof Plants Nature Selected (ferns), Ft. Pickens, Pensacola by Kevin Songer
Mother Nature is especially instructive about nature irrigated plants growing in sea salt influenced areas; up the sides of masonry walls and across barren roofs.

Florida Living Wall & Green Roof Plants Nature Selected (Bidens alba & ferns), Ft. Pickens, Pensacola by Kevin Songer
These photos here were taken on the ocean front walls of the old brick Fort Pickens in Pensacola, Florida, US.

Old forts and other relic structures that have been in existence over time are plant laboratories, experiments in drought, heat, wind and salt tolerance.

Florida Living Wall & Green Roof Plants Nature Selected, Ft. Pickens, Pensacola by Kevin Songer
Another fort, Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine, Florida as been surveyed by biologists and the limestone walls found to grow over fifty different species of plants. 

Although in reality most green roof and living wall designers do not use these specific plants typically found growing across structures, the knowledge gained from examining wild roof and wall plants is invaluable.

Identifying and classifying these found plants as to their Genus and Family classifications can help select other related but more suitable to vertical landscape plants.

Florida Living Wall & Green Roof Plants Nature Selected, Ft. Pickens, Pensacola by Kevin Songer
Moreover, understanding the C3, C4 and CAM photosynthesis pathways evolved by these plants provides a solid basis for green roof and living wall design.  

Examine those plants you seeing growing downtown when you are out and about.  Nature has so much more to teach us than the most detailed scientific manuals!

Florida Nature Fun Poetry - Haiku for Thursday, Feathers, Wind and a Seagull

Florida Nature Fun Poetry - Haiku for Thursday, Feathers, Wind and a Seagull
Florida Haiku, Feather, Wind and Seagull by Kevin Songer
stout wind today
pull feather from the sand and

out pops a seagull

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Florida Wildflower Haiku & Art, Lyre Leaf Sage, Salvia lyrata

Florida Wildflower Haiku & Art, Lyre Leaf Sage, Salvia lyrata
Florida Wildflower Haiku & Art, Lyre Leaf Sage, Salvia lyrata by Kevin Songer
native purple blooms
hummingbirds steal a sip and
chase off butterflies

Lyre-leaf sage is a Florida native and drought tolerant wildflower I see growing across lawns, along roadsides, in fields, meadows and under the forest canopy.

Lyre-leaf sage leaves are lyre-like in shape with deep purple and green colorings. Their light blue flowers provide nectar for hummers and butterflies. The over-lapping leaves of adjacent lyre leaf sage plants keep other weeds down and provide a neat, well-cropped perennial native ground cover appearance. Lyre leaf sage has been one of my favorite and most reliable green roof plants.

Lyre leaf sage has also been used traditionally as a cancer cure. This healing practice was based on a theory that because the plant quickly spread, creating densely populated patches, it must be a natural cure for likewise rapidly spreading cancers. 

Lyre leaf sage is an amazing Florida native perennial, landscape or green roof plant superb in its attraction to pollinators, hummingbirds, bees and butterflies.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Florida Wildflower Haiku & Nature Art, Seaside Oxeye Daisy, Borrichia frutescens

Florida Wildflower Haiku- short verse for Tuesday, Seaside Oxeye Daisy, Borrichia frutescens
Florida Haiku & Nature Art, Seaside Ox-eye, Borrichia frutescens

sometimes cant tell if
sun bleached oxeye masses or
winged southern whites

Seaside oxeye daisy is relatively salt tolerant and often grows along brackish channels near the coast. Seaside oxeye daisy faithfully produces scores of yellow aster type flowers that attract many butterflies but especially kaleidoscopes of winged southern whites. I usually find seaside oxeye daisy grown side by side with black mangroves. Wildlife will utilize this plant’s leaves and flower heads for forage when food becomes scarce.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Florida Wildflower Art & Haiku (Senryu), Marsh Rose Gentian, Sabatia dodecandra

Florida Wildflower Art & Haiku (Senryu), Marsh Rose Gentian, Sabatia dodecandra
Florida Wildflower Haiku, Marsh Rose Gentian, Sabatia dodecandra by Kevin Songer
limestone rock croppings
bees butterflies skipper art
rose gentian drawn

Tarkiln Bayou State Park, Marsh Rose Gentian, Sabatia dodecandra by Kevin Songer

Rose gentian has about a dozen different species found throughout Florida (Sabatia spp.). 

Tarkiln Bayou State Park, Marsh Rose Gentian, Sabatia dodecandra by Kevin Songer
Rose gentian’s flowers are rich in purple and pink hues. When in full summer bloom, Sabatia can fill a roadside drainage swale with incredible swaths of pink and purple. 

Tarkiln Bayou State Park, Marsh Rose Gentian, Sabatia dodecandra by Kevin Songer

Some accounts may exist where early settlers dried Sabatia root and then brewed a chicory-like coffee with the plant parts. This may be a historical carry over from traditions in Europe where the same was practiced with great yellow gentian, Gentiana lutea.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Florida Wildflower Haiku - Short Verse for Sunday, Wild petunia, Ruellia caroliniensis

Florida Wildflower Haiku - Short Verse for Sunday, Wild petunia, Ruellia caroliniensis

Florida Wildflower Haiku - Short Verse & Art, Wild Petunia, Ruellia caroliniensis by Kevin Songer
purple bloom nectar
attracts pollinators all,
far into scrub woods

Wild petunia is always a surprise to discover growing in the woods as the plant and flower brings an aura of nice-neat cultivation to rough and ramble undergrowth. Wild petunia is a cousin of the more invasive Mexican petunia yet wild petunia is a prized Florida native wildflower and does not grow in an invasive manner. The common buckeye and white peacock butterflies seek out wild petunia as larval host plant.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Florida haiku - senryu for first fall Saturday morning; Seaside goldenrod and Mangrove buckeye.

Florida haiku - senryu for first fall Saturday morning; Seaside goldenrod and Mangrove buckeye.
Florida Nature Poetry, Seaside Goldenrod, Mangrove Buckeye by Kevin Songer
harvest goldenrod
mangrove buckeye both bargain,
anticipate first frost

Friday, September 27, 2019

Florida Nature Poetry - Senryu for Friday! Snowy Egrets & Sanibel

Florida Nature Poetry - Senryu for Friday! Snowy Egrets & Sanibel
Florida Poetry, Haiku - Senryu, Sanibel & Snowy Egrets by Kevin Songer 
sanibel traffic
hit the causeway early for
best picnic table

Florida Native Plant Art & Poetry (Green Roof Plant too!), Shiny Blueberry, Vaccinium myrsinites

Florida Nature Haiku for Friday morning, Shiny blueberry, Vaccinium myrsinites
Florida Haiku, Shiny blueberry, Vaccinium myrsinites by Kevin Songer


I always wondered
bout shiny blueberry’s taste,
rabbit got there first
Shiny blueberry is a diminutive member of the blueberry family offering winter seasonal beauty with its namesake bright and shiny red and green leaves. During the growing season shiny blueberry is usually obscured by taller growing plants. Shiny blueberry produces large amounts of fruits sought after by small mammals, birds and other foragers. I see shiny blueberry growing along most trails hiked.

Shiny blueberry makes a good evergreen & salt tolerant green roof & landscape plant too!

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Florida Nature Haiku, Gulf Seashore

gulf seashore haiku
Florida haiku, Gulf seashore by Kevin Songer...

gulf's cool waters crash
drowning out all other sounds
but for seagull's cry

Florida Nature Art & Poetry, Annona glabra, Pond Apple

Florida nature poetry and art; Pond apple, Annona glabra.

alligator grunts
gobbling down a couple
meh tasting green fruits

Pond apple trees, like pop ash and black gum grow up out of the deep and dark swamp depths, producing apple-like fruits eaten by alligators and other wildlife. I would describe pond apple fruit’s taste as more ‘blah-bland’ than tasty, but some do make jellies and jams from the fruit. Pond apple provides habitat for wildlife, birds, orchids and bromeliads. Fort Myers' Six Mile Cypress boardwalk is a great place to experience pond apple up close.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Florida Nature Poetry & Art, Candyroot, Polygala nana

Florida nature senryu - haiku for mid week, Candyroot, Polygala nana.
Florida Wildflower Poetry, Haiku, Senryu, Candyroot, Polygala nana by Kevin Songer
I know I shouldn’t
pull plant and sniff candyroot,
but no one’s looking

Candyroot calls to everyone who has ever pulled up the plant to experience the strong aromatic spicy scent of the roots. Interestingly, candyroot requires ants to collect the plant’s seeds for the
 food value of the seed's coating. Once underground, the seeds then germinate up through the ant's bed. Candyroot’s yellow flowers sit atop stalks rising from a basal rosette of succulent-like leaves.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Florida Green Roof and Living Wall Plants, Salt Tolerance Lessons from Mother Nature Ferns

One of the greatest learning centers of #greenroof and #livingwall knowledge can be found on and across the buildings in any local downtown, urban core area.

Ferns growing unattended on old brick adjacent downtown ocean pier, Kevin Songer 
Every living wall and green roof designer, as well as landscape designers and botanists should carry a 'found plant' journal to record information when they come across such resilient plants as those growing in the cracks and crevices of building walls and roofs, without soil media or added irrigation.

Ferns growing unattended on old brick adjacent downtown ocean pier, Kevin Songer 
Looking back across the decades, this is how I learned what I did concerning shallow root growing systems, nature irrigation and plants suitable for hot, windy, salty environs.

Ferns growing unattended on old brick adjacent downtown ocean pier, Kevin Songer 
These ferns are growing on a wall adjacent the downtown pier in Pensacola, exposed to desiccating winds and a barrage of salty mist.  And they seem to be thriving.

Always keep an eye out for those free lessons from Mother Nature about living wall and green roof plants!