Blakeley, Alabama

The lumberjack fairy

This is a lumberjack fairy in a fantastic tree root of a live oak in Blakeley, Alabama.  Perhaps this fairy retreat provoked my recent addiction to fairy stories?  Blakeley is located to the east of Mobile, Alabama and back in the day it had the best deep water access for the many ships coming to Alabama.  It is now a historic state park and a ghost town.  Both Mobile and Blakeley are in swampy delta areas – five rivers connect at the estuary.  Yellow Fever was common in this area in the 1800s and when it first decimated the population at Blakeley, the remaining residents decided to move to Mobile or other areas.  Unfortunately, there was yellow fever there too and there is a very sad cemetery in Mobile with tiny little graves.  The survivors made it through and we have eradicated yellow fever in America although it is common in other tropical areas.  It is a virus spread by mosquitoes.  Next time you worry about a snake or a cougar, just think how many deaths the mosquito is responsible for.

No fairies but now you know a full grown lumberjack fairy can fit inside it

Where there is death there is life

Elder live oak

What a magnificent old gentleman, his branches graying with Spanish Moss.  Live Oaks live for hundreds of years which worries me because we have one in our front garden that has grown from a 3 ft sapling to 50 ft in 14 years.  Despite that, I love her and stroke her bark when I pass her.  It gives me such pleasure to see the acorns in the leaf litter feeding all the critters.  Click here for a fascinating story about her – One Sleep until Halloween

Postcard from Sugarland

BABYAL 3
Look at this lovely little baby! This is a one year old alligator at Brazos State Park, south west of Houston. http://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/brazos-bend This Park has been closed recently because of the devastating floods in certain parts of Texas. Summer has arrived suddenly and the intense heat has helped to dry up some of the worst of the flooding. The media, quite naturally, has focused on the impact the flooding has had on humans but nature has both suffered and benefited. Texas has had a 10 year drought and the water is badly needed but it doesn’t need to come all at once – does it? The alligators have delayed their breeding season, as have many other animals and some of the alligator eggs have had to be incubated because the nests were too close to human traffic. I had the great privilege of being able to stroke this lovely little critter and like other reptiles it was really dry to the touch, like bumpy leather. It was incredibly hot walking around the various lakes but the trees gave some shade. It was blissfully free of other people because it had only reopened the day before so you had the real feel of escaping the city. It was my first proper visit to Sugarland, the home of Imperial Sugar, and I was very impressed with this small master planned city. It was subtly different from my home to the north of Houston and the ecology changed from Piney Woods to Gulf Coast. Sometimes the best vacations are just an hour or so away… Click on the red link to find out more about Brazos, Sugarland and its intriguing history that goes back to the Spanish land grants in Texas. POSTCARD FROM SUGARLAND – CLICK HERE