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Gardening For Wildlife #49 A New Year to look forward to.
January 07, 2008

A belated Happy New Year to you.

Thanks for letting me have the past two weeks off, I really needed that.

What a wonderful Holiday season it was.

No stress on me at all.

I made up my mind that I was going to enjoy the season and I did. The mind is a powerful tool if we use it.

There was time with family and friends and of course the most important reason of all.

We enjoyed a couple of nice snow storms and some hurricane force winds the past couple weeks.

Yet, today it is in the 50's and all the snow has melted. Rumors of thunderstorms exsist.

Every year I write about the Christmas story, I lose some readers.

Oh well, there loss.

Karen treated herself to an early Christmas.......................

She went and bought herself a Toy Poodle puppy.

A three month old male she named Ziggy.

A couple of days later she said she forgot how much work puppies can be.

Truth is, she wanted a poodle pup and knew I would help With the training.

Akita was her dog, but bonded to me.........

She's making sure Ziggy hangs with her.

Of course, Keet had her nose bent for a week or so, but is coming around now.

The days are growing noticeably longer now,

Hallelujah for that.

Bird activity varies from day to day as I'm sure it does for you.

That okay, it is natural for birds to forage off Nature's bounty and it gives me something different to look at each each day.

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago about several birds being irruptive this winter.

Common redpolls are one of those species. Some days I will have 25 to 30 Redpolls and the next day only a few may show.

Enjoy these little birds if you have them, it may be another decade before they irrupt again.

Red breasted nuthatches are another irruptive bird.

While you may have a Red breasted nuthatch every winter, this year you may have several of them.

Regular readers know that I have several nuthatches and one in particular has been eating from my hand.

Well, this past week his girlfriend has joined him and takes peanut chips from me.

Another male will take from my hand, but wont land on it.

The quality is poor, but here is my little friend. When I get other pictures developed, I'll post them.

Nature awakens the senses.

I've enjoyed some quiet walks in the field and woods. Even in the dead of winter there is always something to see, hear, smell, touch and if you want to, you can taste too.

I had time to reflect and time to think of plans for the coming new year.

What should I do with this newsletter?

Most newsletters seem to be monthly or at best twice a month.

That would make things easier for me I thought.

Thankfully the fresh air cleared the Cobb-webs and I was able to thing clearly.

But what about you, the reader?

Monthly newsletters usually put out general information to cover a whole month and many of them are filled with advertising.

What about information for now or this week?

Monthly newsletters wont let you know that a certain bird irruption is taking place if it is the middle of the month etc.

As long as I can keep news fresh and informative, I will continue with weekly letters.

There may be the occasion when I'm overly busy or need a week off to restore my soul. but I will let you know.

After all, you deserve that don't you?

Yes, nature awakens the senses and in this case, some common sense.

I hope to continue with bird information, butterflies, garden hints and other information and helpful hints on wildlife.

Be sure to get out this week wont you?

This time of year your mail carrier may get a hernia delivering all of the gardening catalogs to you and your neighbors. Well, it's time to add a few more catalogs. has a huge list of free catalogs for gardeners and others

Be sure you order a few.

This time of year I look forward to the garden catalogs.

I can plan gardens for the upcoming year and they help me through the rest of winter and spring fever issues.

, when you are thumbing through your catalogs and making a wish list or two, start putting things down on paper.

If you don't have a sketch of your lawn and gardens, take some time to do so.

This allows you to diagram what you have and what you can put and where.

Make sure you draw plans with mature plants, not as the babies you make get.

If you live in zone 3 or 4, but want something that is hardy to zone 6, treat it as an annual.

Sometimes Plants will survive a mild winter, but you can'y bank on that happening.

Friends that live in the deep South and the Pacific coast are probably getting ready to plant seeds so they have plants ready to drop in the ground next month.

When Gardening for Wildlife, you can ignore most of the rules used in standard gardening.

Look how "Nature" plants and grows?

You want to copy this if you can.

After all, this is what wildlife sees and knows.

Gardening for Wildlife also means less formality and less weeding.

At this stage in life, I have better things to do than pull weeds (like enjoy life more).

This holds true for rural and suburban settings as long as there aren't any neighborhood rules.

You may want to check with your neighborhood association if there is one.

Next week I should be more in the swing of things.

Well that does it for now.

How are you going to look at things this new year?

Is the glass half empty or half full?

I believe Michigan has an unemplyement rate over 7% making it the worse unemployment in the United states.

I prefer to see almost 93% employment.

It's how you look at things and how you think and believe.

Look for the good and positive

Think it.

Believe it.

We are what we think about most of the time.

That is one reason why I want you to smile and pass them on.

When you smile and share them, you lift up another person and you can't help but feel good about yourself.

Its time to fly

Until next time,

"Treat the earth well:

It was not given to you by your parents,

It was loaned to you by your children.

We do not inherit the Earth from our

Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children."

Ancient Indian Proverb

Your friend indeed,

Ron Patterson

Gardening For Wildlife.

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