After a week of driving back and forth from Strathcona, mostly in the rain, I woke up the last morning there to see blue sky outside the window, promising a good day, at last, to get in a quick tour of the gardens before I came home to Delta. A deceptive promise it was; by the time I'd done the morning chores and packed, the clouds had settled in again.
But it wasn't raining - yet - when it was time to leave. The car was parked just a few steps from MacLean Park and the Paneficio; I went over to see what Valerie and Arnt were displaying this month. I stood for a while admiring a reclaimed wood bench, visualizing a room to build around it.
Behind me, a bird screamed; not a crow as I would expect in Strathcona. I turned and looked for it, finally seeing it high in the branches of the closest tree, barely visible in the low light; about crow-sized, but with a splotchy white breast.
|Could be a merlin. Too small for a peregrine, I think.|
I walked around and around the tree, trying to find a vantage point where no branches would be in the way. It was hopeless; from every angle, he was sheltered. How do these birds ever fly in and out of such thickets without banging into a dozen branches on the way? Amazing!
|Another front view, this time showing the barred tail.|
The grass under the shadiest park of the park never does very well. This year, they've plowed it under and planted a ground cover I don't recognize.
|Tiny plants, the leaves almost flat against the ground, the flowers at most two inches high.|
|The flowers sit upright in a three-lobed calyx tray.|
|Spray of pink tubular flowers, and a blue door.|
I took a last few photos of flowers beside the car before it started to rain again. I drove home and we went to Home Depot to buy plants and potting soil in the rain.
March came in like a wimpy lion; it went out like a grumpy lamb.