Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spring in South Dakota

At the beginning of last week, my garden had over 3 feet of snow over the whole area.  At the end of the week, the raised beds have no snow, and the compost ring is free of snow as well. The snow on the ground around the beds will disappear soon, but the weather temp has dropped, and the wind is cold.
In other parts of South Dakota, it has snowed again in the northern part, and a little south, the water is running furiously.  Houses are sandbagged and roads are washing out. We got a little skiff of snow as well.  I hope to get to Sioux Falls, the Falls Park to watch the water running over the falls there when it warms up a little.  There will be a lot of water surging over the rocks.
At our house, central SD, the tiger lilies are out of the ground about 2 inches, and the tulips are about 6 inches high.  The lilacs are budding, hooray, they were protected from the deer this winter, inside the garden fence.  The rabbits played havoc, tho, since the snow was so high, they worked on a lot of lilac branches, so those ends will not be blooming.  We shall see.  We need a dog to keep the rabbits at bay, our many cats do not seem to bother the rabbits!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Snow Geese

Spring is coming!  Last week, hundreds of thousands of snow geese flew through this South Dakota flyway.  Amazing to watch!  They fly in a V formation, but not as precise as Canadian geese do.  Sometimes the line is longer on one side of the V than the other, or 3 or 4 fly in the middle of the big V.  If you stand and watch a lone goose, it flies harder and faster than the others, and pulls into place somewhere in the line.  They change places frequently, although that is harder to track as they go overhead.  Sometimes they are quite high, another flock might be lower, and almost directly under them.  One group landed south of us to feed and we watched as they took to the air, and got into their V's.  Since their wing tips are black, if they are high, you don't at first think they are white.  When they are lower, you can see plainly their white bodies.  The juveniles are not yet white either.  A sight to behold!

Friday, March 11, 2011


Grandson Brent is currently at  Livestock Show and Rodeo in  Houston.  He is one of the 6 pickup men for the 20 performance rodeo.  It is live streamed every night, so we have been able to watch some of the rodeos.  It is fun trying to pick Brent out of the others, who all wear the same colored shirt, along with a black hat.  They come flying by a cowboy that needs taken off his horse, so you have to look quick.
In addition to all the rodeo events, there has been calf scramble for the 4-Hers or FFA kids.  They release 16 calves to about 30 kids.  These are not baby calves, so it is not an easy task to catch, halter, then they have to drag them over to a line in the arena.  Fun to watch!
Another event they are having is called Chuck Wagon Races.  A wagon, one driver, four horses.  They make a figure 8 twice around some barrels, then 3 teams once around the arena at a furious pace to see who comes in first in a heat race.  Did I mention this is a very large arena?  There are 12 chutes for the rough stock to come out.  The attendance the first night was over 46,000, and on Sunday PM there was over 115,000.  It takes a big place to hold this many people.  The Rodeo continues through March 20, so they are about half done.
Problem with the Live Stream on my computer, tho.  It stops and starts again, and you miss what is going on while it is stopped.  When it is stopped, tho, you can see some spectacular shots of animals kicking, or a cowboy in the air.  My internet provider is no help in solving this problem.
Well, we will keep watching anyway!!  Fantastic rodeos!