Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Long Departures......

.......or departing in a blaze of glory?????

Yesterday was the last day of our visit, and over the course of the past few days, we had talked about things we wanted to see, and our hosts had added more that they wanted to share to our list.  One was this 'must see':

What you are seeing is the front yard/garden of a fabulous artist who works with trees, shrubs, and flowers.  I hope the photo will enlarge so that you can see his sculpture of a lovely lady carrying two platters: he has sculpted this out of shrubberies.  His entire yard is a delight, but it is located on a somewhat busy intersection, so I was unable to photograph too much.  

Here's one more shot:

you are now viewing our lady's posterior, but by doing so, you are able to admire a bit more of the garden and sculpture.  I hope  you like it.....it really sends me!

Eva asked about the smudge pot that I showed a few posts back, and she also wanted to know if the tree next to it was dead.  I'll answer her second question first: no, that tree is a deciduous persimmon and is just beginning to leaf out:

I can share only a limited amount of knowledge about smudge pots, but you can learn a lot more by simply checking out the info on Wikipedia.  

The base of the smudge pot was filled with oil, which was then lit with a taper, and the smoke would slowly waft out through the vents.  Because the pots were placed between just a few trees, they would keep the local area warm, and allay freezing of the trees and their fruits.  Of course, the pots were only lit during potential freezing conditions.  The pots came into use after an overwhelming freeze in 1913 and remained in use until sometime in the mid 1970s.  Because of pollution concerns and also those of fuel consumption, the pots went out of favor at that time and our now history.

a detail shot of the oils port of entry to the smudge pot

 and here you can see the vents from which the smudge was emmitted

I have lots more to share with you about our last day, but due to time change and other aspects of the fast lane, I'll close and promise to post more in another day or two.

Thanks for tuning in!



Jeannie said...

I love the topiary! I have always marveled at how they are created. I tried. The poor boxwood looked like an empty bowl. I have since let it do its own thing.:) I love the bark on the palms. Smudge pots are still used in our area in the spring for cherries and soft fruits. Some orchards have wind machines or if really flush, they hire a helicopter. That is usually used after a big rain when the cherries are getting ripe. Fun to watch! So, you need a vacation to recover from your vacation? I bet you're anxious to see Charlie and Barker. Welcome home. I hear your studio calling!

Carol said...

I've been away for a few days too, visiting Suzy in her new beach home. Gorgeous. I've enjoyed your photos of your trip and I watched the cholla video - yikes, that looked horrible. So we've both had lovely holidays, and now it's time to get back to work. xxoo

Eva said...

The smudge pot is interesting, indeed! As we have some fruit growing areas around southern Hamburg, we know the problem with spring frosts; here, they are a danger to the blossoms until the middle of May. Our solution is to spray the trees with water, so the blossoms are safe under a skin of ice.