In early 2013 I dreamed that I was standing at the top of our north pasture looking over a beautiful, manicured formal garden. Spotless paths spread geometrically from the center towards hedgerows and flowers on the garden’s edges. I woke and recalled the reality of the north pasture, which is beautiful not in a manicured way, but in its own wild, natural way. While I worked with the dream notion of a formal garden for the Layla Shawl design including nupps and starflowers, I really would never want type of flower garden. Our pastures provide incredible natural beauty from gently waving tall grass and an abundance of wildflowers, to being a host to wildlife from bald eagles to deer.
For several weeks now I’ve been noticing the emergence of our first wildflowers of the year. Later in the summer there will be many more but right now it’s hard not to be charmed by the Indian Paintbrush flowers with their orange-red petals. Indian Paintbrush is a parasitic plant (usually deriving nourishment from native grasses) that hummingbirds and butterflies enjoy.
I’ve also been watching the Vetch in the lower pasture grow. American (purple) Vetch is actually a flowering vine. We mow pathways in our pastures to accommodate trail running and casual meandering alike. By the time our pastures are hayed in the summer the vetch can be two to three foot tall.
Because of the pandemic, last year was the first time in ages that we were able to enjoy the entire wildflower season. We often took afternoon or evening strolls through the pastures just to see what was new. If next month is like mid-May and June last year, there will Butterfly Weed, Queen Anne’s Lace, Daisies, and Black-Eyed Susans in our pastures.
This weekend a knitter and her spouse are staying in the Farmhouse on Clear Creek via Airbnb. We crossed paths on our evening stroll Thursday and discussed birds they’d spotted. Have you seen House Wrens, Eastern Bluebirds, Titmice, Summer or Scarlet Tanagers, Chickadees or heard the evening calls of the Whippoorwill?
With the emergence of wildflowers here on the farm we thought it might be a nice time to celebrate the Layla Shawl which was first published in the Spring of 2013. And what better way to celebrate than a special offer to our customers?
For the first two weeks of May whenever you purchase a skein of Lost City Silk, or six balls of Jamieson & Smith 2 ply lace, we’ll include a Ravelry coupon code to get the Layla Shawl free, and we’ll even include a bag of size 8/0 seed beads for free. We have quite a few beads on hand and Denise will select a bag that goes nicely with whatever shade of yarn you choose.