Nature Friday ~ June 26, 2020

Welcome to Nature Friday where we join our friends and hosts, Rosy, her new sister and her two brothers at LLB in Our Backyard. Be sure to visit them and see their brand new sister, Sunny who is as cute as a button. The dogs enjoyed bringing last week’s sniff around  so much last week, they asked if they could do an encore today. So…take it away Norman and Elsa.

Norman: Right, mum, thanks. I’m really chuffed to be able to share another edition of nature which, if you follow us regularly has been interesting. I mean yesterday’s early morning raccoon sighting was absolutely gobsmackingly brilliant! This morning my sister and I looked for them but only found our bunny friend, Roger who didn’t seem all that keen on chatting with me.

Elsa: Wait…what…a bunny?! How’d I miss Roger? I always see him way before you do. This is a travesty. I’ve been robbed!! Where’s justice when you need it?

Bunny

Norman: Blimey, sister…you especially need to pay attention to today’s garden plant, lavender. Mum told me this is time of year when lavender is in full bloom. Because of the pandemic, there was no lavender festival to visit but that doesn’t mean we can’t fetch some lavender info and images for everyone from around our garden from previous posts. Of course you can her posts from a past festival for additional images. We all know how wonderful lavender smells but did you know it helps reduce anxiety and emotional stress, heals burns and wounds, improves your sleep, can restore skin complexion and reduce acne, helps slow aging with powerful antioxidants, improves eczema and psoriasis and helps alleviate headaches?

Elsa: This is just all wrong. Can’t believe you didn’t tip me off that Roger was out. I thought you were my loving brother! What gives, dude?

Norman: Calm down and stop spinning, sister; there’s no need to ‘throw a wobbly.’  You need to chill out to keep your stress levels low. Remember your seizures.

Elsa: Lavender?! You made me miss a bunny and you think I’ll be content with sniffing a dumb plant. Argh…you are a clueless moron if you think lavender will substitute for a chance to chase a rabbit. Sheesh, “calm down,” he says. Calm down when there’s a rabbit around and I missed him!!! Grrr.

Lavender

Norman: Blimey, someone needs to stop whinging on about the oddest things. My sister could especially use a long sniff of this brilliant plant. Did you know lavender helps release tension and calms the mind? Lavandula (whose common name is lavender) is a genus of 47 known species of flowering plants from the mint family. Native to Europe, northern and eastern Africa, the Mediterranean region, southwest Asia and southeast India, it does well in temperate climates and is a favorite in mum’s garden. Hers are the most widely cultivated species, Lavandula angustifolia which has deep fragrance and color. The bracts (or buds) are perfect for sniffing, saving and savoring right now.Lavender

Elsa:  Whatev. I’m not as keen on it as Sam was and you seem more interested in catching the bees when you’re out in the lavender bed. I’m more focused on the squirrel in the tree above the lavender patch. He mocks me and as a Ninja, I simply just cannot let that stand.

Norman: You, more than anyone would do with a good sniff of this plant. It’s well known for calming the the anxious. Those buds (known as bracts) have the strongest scent before they open into their little flowers. Mum even makes some wonderful goat’s soap with her harvested lavender buds.

Elsa: Ok, I’ll start paying more attention. I suppose a bit of calm is good for anyone. I’ve heard that lavender essential oil works wonders on burns. Mom was taking something out of the oven the other day and I heard a lot of HBO words. She got out a little bottle of lavender essential oil and put it on her thumb and she actually “ahhh’ed’ out loud. No blister, no pain, just fast relief.

Norman: Yes, it is the bee’s knees for treating burns and she even used it on me last week when it looked like I might have an infected ear. It felt so much better and the redness was gone overnight. I feel so much better knowing lavender is a universal oil that is used to balance the body whenever there is a need. It even helps repeal nasty insects that often plague pups and peeps.

Elsa: Ok brother, you’ve turned me into a true believer in the power of lavender. It’s especially fragrant in the early morning hours before it gets too hot.

Lavender

Norman: It really does; I made a point of checking it out after our early morning constitution. Now let’s go hunt butterflies.

Butterflies

Elsa: Umm, yeah…no. I hunt rabbits bozo, not butterflies. Besides, that isn’t a butterfly you British fool. It’s a Painted Lady moth who are taking a vacation in our garden before heading up to the mountains. Sheesh, when will this guy ever learn?

Nature Friday

Live, love, bark! 🐾

61 thoughts on “Nature Friday ~ June 26, 2020

  1. Bunnies!! Our neighbour used to have 3 rabbits that visited every afternoon during the summer. They never bothered with the vegetable garden and were a joy to have. Our siamese at the time adored the bunnies and could be seen hopping behind the three of em. She must’ve thought she was a bunny too.

    Jean

    1. Elsa is mesmerized by them; but (understandably) the neighborhood hoppers are not that keen about a Ninja chasing them.

  2. Ha! I had a Roger (Actually, I call him… er, all rabbits “Bunny Bunny) camped out in my driveway when I came home from work this morning…. and he wasn’t about to move! I rolled down my window and waved my arm at him, but he just sat there right in my path. I finally had to veer around him to get him to hop along somewhere else so he wouldn’t end up like a certain possum. The bunnies are much braver around here than the squirrels, who’d start running away as soon as I turned onto the street…

    1. Your squirrels have probably watched all the Buster episodes and know the extent of your productions. The ones around here just flip me off. One severely damaged a new tree on Friday and I only can hope he didn’t strip the bark down to the cambium. 😬 Bloody buggars!

      1. The lady across the back from the church was a breeder of rabbits – not just your every day bunny – really fancy rabbits. Anyway, she lost interest, lost control but she lost something and the pests were digging under the fence and infesting our property. I had a call from the State Wildlife People asking me to unlock the gates and let them into the church grounds. They went along the fence blocking up the holes, but they told me it was a serious problem and the pests were all over the area.. Bunnies – even fancy ones – are not among my favourite creatures. Oh and the lady, when approached by the State Wildlife Authority, was not very helpful – or so they told me.

        1. They can become pests quickly. Much like squirrels 🐿 You and the Ninja have something in common. 😊

  3. I wish I could have the same success growing lavender down here in Texas that I had in Colorado and in Oregon. I’ve lost all 6 of my lavs over the last 3 years. *sigh*

  4. I sleep under our lavender n the garden, while the bees are busy and Granny has it in her Yogi tea. We’re so calm…MOL…Thanks for the information, Norman and Elsa. Now you better give that rabbit some lavender too, it may help to …play with him😸Pawkisses for a Happy Weekend🐾😽💞

    1. Putting some lavender in tea sounds like a fabulous idea! We’re going to try that. We can all do with a bit more zen.

  5. Lavender, laventeli in Finnish, must be g, because people have used it for centuries, and a lavender field is really beautiful.
    Thank you Elsa and Norman for this post, and I forgot to say those racoons are so cute, we don’t have them here.
    Many hugs,
    Kosmo

    1. We think it is one of the best for all that it is able to do. Kiitos paljon for the kind words, Kosmo.

      1. It was! I had the recipe from a French chef’s book…and for the life of me I cannot temember his name, though he started the fashion for deserting butter and cream in favour of reductions…

            1. Looks like there are a boatload pile of recipes on the ‘Net. I may have to try making some with my lavender buds. But can assure you that I won’t be using powdered milk in mine. Definitely NOT!

  6. Don’t worry Norman, we thought that was a butterfly, too. Mom’s got lavender, and had no idea it was good for the things you mentioned (except the relaxing part). She’s become a firm believer in Neem EO, and is going to break out (not break, really) her little bottle of Lavender EO. Thanks for the tips, you’re the best! And Elsa, why don’t you sniff some of that lavender… just sayin’ XOX Lucy and Xena

    1. Lavender EO is really quite the workhorse magic potion. Yes, Norman and I agree the Ninja should be sniffing it all day long. Now if only we can convince her to do just that.

  7. The lavender is beautiful – bet it smells so good.

    Mom was out front with Misty and Lightning was in the back yard barking at the fence line. Misty was trying to figure out what Lightning was barking at, and lo and behold, one of those cottontails came racing from the back to the front right by Misty and Mom and then bunny hopped lickety split across the street!!! Misty so wanted to play chase.

    Thanks for all your kind words to welcome Misty home.

    Woos – Lightning, Misty, and Timber

  8. I’ve been trying to grow lavender in my garden every year, and can’t even get the seeds to sprout! I did finally get one plant this year. Is it a perennial that spreads?
    Honestly, I was never a fan of the lavender scent, because all I had smelled was artificial lavender scents. Once I discovered the essential oil I became a fan! I imagine the fresh flowers are even better.
    Great job on the tour, you two, thanks for all the info!

    1. Yes, you’ll see seeds (they remind me of poppy seeds) in the spent blossoms that will reseed nearby ( or not depending on wind). The English varieties are better suited for areas with cold winters and they seem to be more intense with their scent. Artificial lavender is so gross but the real deal is heavenly. I love brushing up against them where the leaves and stems release that glorious scent. I think of them as nature’s room freshener. 😊

  9. Mew mew mew mee did not know THE Butterfly was a Mothy eether Norman…. Mothy iss furry purrty. An all yore Lavendur lookss so lovelee….LadyMew soakss inn Lavendur Eppy…Epsssey…Epsum Saltss when shee iss inn alot of bone pain an it all wayss soothess her body an her mind too!
    Sumtiemss mee thinkss shee shuud just soak inn tub all day, mew mew mew….
    Have a wunderfull weekend Norman an Elsa an Miss Monika.
    **purrss** BellaDharma

  10. Lavender is our pawrents favorite scent, we bet those flowers smell wonderful!! Good job on the bunny sighting Norman(sorry Elsa)!

  11. I love Lavender. I remember visiiting the South of France where there were acres and acres of it. So beautiful. By the way Norman I would have called the moth a butterfly too.

    1. It’s really unfortunate the lavender festival wasn’t held this year due to the pandemic but totally understand. So enjoyed walking the rows and rows of that fragrant plant.

      Norman appreciates the butterfly pass. Never fear I thought they were butterflies too until I did a deep dig in them last year. 🦋

  12. Oh my goodness, I LOVE lavender! Even the lavender “stuff” in the Yardley soaps. I need to get a plant or two for the back yard – to repel the mosquitoes! And I love the lavender mist I used to get from the lavender farm in Hawaii. But the shipping costs these days are just plain asinine so I do without. I could probably make my own if I had some essential oil. I already have the filtered water supply.

    1. Mum diffuses lavender all the time because it’s calming (she needs it as much as Elsa) and it’s so wonderful. She even cuts some stems that are budding, let’s them dry out then uses the buds in the soap she makes. It’s so wonderful to wash your hands in. Such a pretty plant that smells divine.
      Your friend,
      Stormin’ Norman 🐾

  13. I removed my front lawn 8 years ago, now about 2/3 of my front yard is lavender, penstemon, and salvia. Salvia and lavendar are practically indestructable, the penstemon flower stalks are spectacular. Ihave all colors of lavendar, including yellow. They are all drought tolerant perennials that only need water more than once a week in 100° weather, like this whole week.

    1. Yes, another wonderful benefit to all of those plants is their low water requirements making each of them perfect for hot summer temperatures (which we’ve had as well). Only 87 days to the arrival of autumn, but who’s counting? 🤣 Stay cool.

    1. What?? Lavender on the plant is fabulous. Not that imitation stuff-then we’re with you.

        1. Oh yeah, the stuff put in things is pretty gross. But the ‘real deal’ is heavenly. Kind of like banana. I can’t stand banana ‘flavored’ stuff, grosses me out.

            1. Exactly! So gross and has a positively disgusting scent on top of that hideous aftertaste.

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