BELOW: my Nature’s Energy artwork of the tomatoe-leaf-eating Green Horned Caterpillar.
This little charicature of a critter (Green Horned Caterpillar) and his family decimated at least one of my tomato plants. Apparently Tomato leaves are their favorite food. Just before I released him (far from my garden site) he posed with the Shrek chia head that adorns my basil pot.
More evidence that Mother Nature has a good sense of humor and is an excellent artist!
What wonderful sights and sounds are in your yard?Â
See many more wonderful Nature Images at: www.debracortese.com
DON’T forget Mother’s Day is on May 11th. Lots of great Nature Art on cards, prints, handbags, journals and more. Visit here for fine art prints and limited editions, and you can see the Green Horned Caterpillar on shirts and more in my shop at Cafepress.
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Enjoy the Magic!Â
Nature’s Energy is definitely speaking loudly to me in the past couple of weeks. First, I’m in the right place at the right time to help rescue an adorable little puppy. I’d been helping a friend reestablish his community newspaper (I’m the production department) when he found the little guy crossing a very busy 4 way intersection in North Miami. Pup was covered with very large fleas, filthy dirty, and his ribs were clearly defined so we knew he had not been getting any tlc. He spent the first night at the office and then I brought him home, got him cleaned up, de-flead and well-fed for a few days. A friend of the friend said he’d take him for a pet, but never showed up. So, he’s back here, living the life of a pampered prince among the 7 stray cats that have now designated us as their servants. Good news though, I posted his picture and info to the Rescue communities and instantly got a response from Robbie atÂ www.sabbathrescue.orgÂ Robbie sent the info around and withing the next 24 hours I heard from several people in the chain that Melody ofÂ Ethical Bull Breed Rescue and Referral of FloridaÂ Â had a place for him already. Problem is, he’s a pit bull puppy and it’s illegal to own him in Miami-Dade County. So, the little outcast must move north to Broward or Palm Beach and that’s right where Melody is located. So, sometime next week, we’ll arrange the trip and little Jeffrey (couldn’t hold my daughter back from naming him) will find a new home with a woman who already has a pit bull and she works at a doggy day care. I love when this works out for the best!Â …Now, about those HONEYBEES…I pulled in the driveway on Wed and there was this cloud of buzzing, swarming bees just making their way to the southwest corner of my bedroom. I live in a old wooden house and it has more than a few places that need some work. Needless to say, the bees knew this was an ideal place to relocate for 3 reasons: first, access was easy; second, they already knew (through the cosmic bee grapevine) that I wouldn’t exterminate them but instead would call Beeman Â http://www.bees-n-the-keys.com/Â Â to come to their rescue. Third reason is because they had done this before only last year and on the opposite wall of the same bedroom! (different swarm, but probably same ancestor bees).Honey bees are a vital part of our food chain. They are the only natural pollinators of our fruits and vegetables and since so many natural habitats are being developed for human use, and people seem to think they should kill all creatures whose homes they have usurped, extermination is unfortunately, the most commonÂ method of bee removal.I’ve checked with the Florida extension service, and Bud Grant is the state bee inspector that I’ve talked with about this. Haven’t met him in person yet, but I’m happy to say that he agrees it is in everyone’s best interest to relocate and save the honeybees.Â
Now, this little operation takes Beeman a few hours or so depending on the size and location of the hive and how long it takes to capture the Queen. Plus he drives up from Key Largo. Â Got here before 8 am and I think he was finished around noon. Even though the bee invasion is a nuisance and it does cost Â to have them removed and relocated, I have to say that Mike is the most knowledgable and interesting character to watch and learn from. He coaxes the bees out of the hive as if he were soothing a little baby. Calls the Queen by the name of Momma, the workers are ‘girls’ and even the drones are treated with gentle vacuuming and handling. Last year, Mike used his bee smoker to relax the girls before vacuuming them into the bee box. I have a lot of pictures of the process and notes too. This man truly enjoys his work, (or ‘dance with life’ asÂ Mike DooleyÂ called it in a recent “Thought from the Universe”.) It had been a stressful week, but by tonight, I’m seeing the light again and it is not a train ;-)Here are a couple of pics of the puppy and the bees. No honey this time, but last year they’d been in the wall for long enough to have some great tasting honey. Comb and all.Â You can visitÂ Bees-in-the-keysÂ online and order honey from Mike (maybe produced from my bees of last years relocation). Tell him I sent you. He has a unique, Forest Gump way about him. Very refreshing, especially for Miami!Â Â
Notice: All artworks are copyrighted by Debra Cortese.
No reproduction without written permission. All rights reserved by the artist.
On Thursday evening I had an early preview of the award winning Orchids atÂ Fairchild’s Annual Orchid Festival.Â Â (Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens is high on my list of inspirational nature sites, and I also volunteer there whenever I can. Keeps me in touch and gets meÂ out of the studio*) Â Took about 80 pictures on Thursday night but am not satisfied with them, so will head back today in an attempt to capture the images in my head. Â Orchids are, so far, the most animated, charicature-like creations of Mother Nature that I have had the pleasure to experience. Â ALSO must add that there are now Botero and Lichtenstein sculptures on the grounds of Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Coral Gables, Florida… in addition to the very organic and multidimensional Â Chihuly glass. Â And… a little self promo here, The Shop at Fairchild carries a selection ofÂ Nature’s Energy HandbagsÂ that I designed exclusively for the Shop.Â Â Check back in a month to see the resulting artworks… or better yet, sign up for my monthly newsletter and you’ll not only get to see the work but will also receive special member’s only pricing, be eligible for my monthly giveaways and instantly receive a link to download a FREE 2008 Nature’s Reflections Calendar.
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