guess the weather

Hello everyone, and greetings from soggy Colorado; once again it is I, Chess the purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, and doing a much better job than he could do if he filled in for me. You may remember me from such posts as “Going To California” and “A Poopy Day”, among other delights. Here I am, in my fort, in a characteristic pose.


Today, the guy I live with decided to invent a new game. It’s called “Guess the Weather”. The rules are simple. Try to guess what the weather is like here. There aren’t any prizes or anything. We have a saying here, which is truer than the other saying everybody else says is a saying, and that is, “If you don’t like the weather here, wait for three months and it might change.” I’m only partly kidding.


Actually, it was nice when I decided to get up at six this morning. Chilly, and it smelled like wet wood and wet garden (instead of my neighbor’s air “freshener”, which is what it usually smells like). The guy I live with was a little surprised because I got up at 8:45 yesterday morning. On our morning walk it was sprinkling, and we got soaking wet, which was fun. Then we took a nap, which was also fun, then the sun came out and the guy I live with headed out into the garden with his trowel, and did stuff for a while. A warm breeze came up, too.

He planted some bulbs. He has this motto, “Plant one, slice through two.” He gets really mad at himself when he slices through bulbs, but there are zillions in the garden, so it’s hard not to. He thinks there should be a garden Bulb Detector, like an X-ray machine, so that you can see bulbs underground before you plant more.

He took a picture of the dyckia on the driveway. It’s half agave and half asparagus, he says. I think he focused on the leaves instead of the asparagus part. No, really, it’s sitting in a pot on the driveway. The guy I live with says we only have one car, so there’s plenty of room for plants there.

We used to have two cars but after my mommy died the guy I live with gave his car, a white Focus named Snowdrop, to the Denver Rescue Mission. They were really nice people; the woman who came to get it cried when he gave her the keys. And then later he got a really nice note from the person who had been given the car by the Mission. So that’s why there’s room on the driveway for plants. No one is going to swipe this, that’s for sure.


He also walked around to the side yard and took this picture of a colchicum. He thinks it’s Colchicum speciosum ‘Album’.


Another interesting thing that happened is that with all the rain, the yellow jackets in the back yard are blaming the guy I live with for getting their nest all wet. They chased him all over the back yard and it was pretty funny to see him do the Yellow Jacket Dance. He didn’t get stung though.

The nest is under a rock.


After dinner we went on our walk, and halfway through I was pretty sure I heard thunder, and it turned out I was right. As usual. I can hear Brie being sliced ever so quietly in the kitchen, with, as Raymond Chandler wrote, “as much noise as a bill makes in a wallet.” Brie is one of my favorites, though the guy I live with says I can’t have too much fat; like it’s not good for me or something. How can something that tastes so good be bad for you?

Anyway, it thundered hugely and loudly for a while, and I hid under the table here. I didn’t want to see my skeleton like they say you can do if you get hit by lightning. Then it rained, and then the sun came out, and now it’s raining again. A lot. Wait, no, it stopped. We’ve “only” gotten about three inches (7.5cm) in the last three or so days. It’s bizarre that I can say “only”. The flooding up north is really bad.

I’ll say goodbye with that, and with a picture of one of our garden tenants staying dry. (And safe, too.)




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18 Responses to guess the weather

  1. Susan ITPH says:

    The white Colchicum speciosum covered in water droplets, with its pink stigma and yellow anthers and hints of pink in the petals…. It’s magnificent. I don’t know what more to say. So, I’ll dwell on the bunny. You’ve still got bunnies. Have you left the trap out, or are you letting the owls put the fear of God into them?

    • paridevita says:

      The white colchicum is supposed to have a green center, which I didn’t notice, so it might be something else. I suppose there’s a label somewhere. Thought about going back to look, but, guess the weather.
      The trap is just for show. It’s not set.
      Even if there weren’t still bunnies, more would tunnel under the fence. They have a feverish craving, as Farrer said, for anything Atriplex. I caged the A. confertifolia, extra silver form, and they hop on top of the cages to eat the leaves. I put chicken wire on top, and the eat the leaves as they grow through. Squirrels eat them too. Lost all the A. corrugata and A. gairdneri that way, as well as the four-wing saltbush.

      • Susan ITPH says:

        Well, can we blame them? Atriplex is snacky. A. canescens always shows signs of munching on grazed lands here. I guess ranchers here like to pre-salt their beef.

      • paridevita says:

        It’s still very annoying. Rabbit Stopper and Deer Off seem to work; just have to remember to spray it.

      • Susan ITPH says:

        Have been poking around. These are C. byzantinum ‘Album’.

      • paridevita says:

        I think you’re right, because the purple styles are diagnostic, though it’s called ‘Innocence’ now. ‘Album’ is apparently an invalid name. Byzantinum is thought to be a hybrid of Colchicum cilicium, whose picture appears today. The purple styles aren’t really visible, but they’re there.
        I probably bought one bulb of ‘Innocence’ thinking it was something different.

  2. Lucky guy not getting stung by that scary looking yellow jacket!

    • paridevita says:

      He gets stung all the time, and so came to an “understanding” with the yellow jackets. In other words, he threatened to wipe them out, with Dr. Bronner’s, if they stung me.

  3. petabunn says:

    I know I shouldn’t but I did laugh at your ‘plant one, slice through two’ remark Chess. Still as you said he has plenty of bulbs in the garden. Looks like a colchicum, maybe the rain washed out the green… Bummer about the thunder coming back, eat more brie to put it out of your mind. I do like bunnies…

    • paridevita says:

      Brie is good. So is Manchego, aged three months, or a year. I don’t know why humans wait so long to eat cheese. He bought some more Brie today; I can hear it sitting in the refrigerator …
      He sliced through a rare corydalis about a month ago and you should have heard the slicing-through-rare-corydalis vocabulary he used.

  4. Fisher, the Wonder Dog says:

    We’re with you on the brie, Chess. No fat, no flavor is what we say around here, which explains why double-cream brie is the absolute bestest! Also happy to hear that the worst of the rains have not come your way. May the rain that you have had bring you only good things, the way that rain is supposed to do, for Pete’s sake!

    • paridevita says:

      Camembert is good too. I get some of that from time to time. Stilton is probably the favorite of all border collies, though, to quote Wallace, I do like a bit of gorgonzola. We really like Wallace and Gromit. (I’m Gromit in this household.)
      The guy I live with talks about things like St. Andre from time to time. I think I would like that, too.

  5. ellynaturals says:

    Greetings from the other side of the world (South Africa). Thank you for your most entertaining and informative blog- I was dividing a Dyckia and found you. Half agave and half asparagus is spot on and firmly decides where the plant fits. Anna and Missy, our two border collies, send regards. Missy’s pedigree is questionable but she is very entertaining; likes to catch and eat bees and more white than black. Send us some rain- we’re in an arid area…………..

    • paridevita says:

      Eating bees sounds like a bad idea…..
      I think you divide dyckias by whacking them with a shovel. Too wary to pick this one up until it gets cold and has to go inside.

  6. Lovely photos, every one. Your garden, Chess, currently looks rain-besotted. And, truly, your person looks to have had a lucky escape from being stung, all for a photo to please us. Touching tale of a Snowdrop too. What a wonderful post you have given us.

  7. Vivian Swift says:

    Awww, the bunnies are back! Good to know that they have eaves to stay dry under. No wonder they flock to your realm — all those good deeds must draw them in. I would, if I were a bunny. What stories could be told about that backyard community if only those critters could talk. Oh, wait.

    I’m still laughing at the post about what a jerk Earl the Squirrel is…hey. Earl the Squirrrel…I just got that.

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