Wednesday, September 05, 2007


People from other parts of the country think Iowa is flat (that is, if they don't think Iowa is where they grow potatoes). Iowa is not in fact flat for the most part; it is instead a landscape of gently rolling hills. Not mountains, to be sure, and probably not even real hills in the eyes of New Englanders. The contours of our land have been smoothed and worn by eons of wind, water and ice. Iowa is underlain by an old sea bed, with outcroppings of the resulting limestone filled with the fossils of the creatures that lived in those ancient Cambrian waters 250 million years ago.
More recently, in a geologic sense, huge glaciers creaked and groaned down from the Canadian Shield, scouring the land and pushing up long piles of glacial till. When the ice melted, torrents of silt-laden water poured down what would be Iowa's river valleys. That such violent forces should leave us with the benign and quietly beautiful spot that we live in, is a testament to the healing abilities of long stretches of time.
In this last month of summer, with cornflower blue skies, and air that fairly vibrates with heat and sunlight, the undulating hills of Iowa glow with legions of bright yellow prairie flowers. As the sun westerns, this glow turns from yellow to gold, and finally fades reluctantly as the owls awaken from their slumber. It is a lovely time and place... it is September in Iowa.
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From the way you describe it, Iowa seems like a lovely place to be in September!
The feield looks gorgeous, too.
A field of yellow glowing in the sunshine would be a lovely sight.
Coming from a gardener like myself, I really enjoyed your blossoming description of what I experience at a different level. Our land is just a larger garden and can be enjoyed in many different ways.
I was shocked, the first time I drove over the river, towards Hawkeye land. I didn't know-it's much prettier than Illinois.
Delighted... with the rain we've had, it's truly gorgeous this year.

Olivia... it was prettier in real life.

Melissa... thanks, and nice job on your site!

Sissy... well, Illinois is no slouch.My bro lives in Morris.

I just happened upon your site. I totally enjoyed your beautiful pictures that you captured and shared with us. Your words also flow with deep appreciation of God's gift of nature for us to enjoy. I also live in eastern Iowa about an hour away. We have about 2 acres of beautiful, shady big oak trees. I tend to only have a variety of hostas and I struggle with putting color in with my landscaping. For health reasons I am not able to plant and work with a lot of annuals any more so I tend to focus on some basic plants in pots to add color. I do plan to add coleus wherever I can because I can cut and root them in water & put them in pots for next year. Any suggestions that you may have would be great. Just keep sharing your beautiful yard with us and I'll maybe catch on! Thank you. :-)

Daffodils for spring are nice, because they multiply and critters don't eat them. Hellebores also (though they don't multiply, they don't get eaten)... they go real well with hostas. If you don't have critters, lilies are great in light shade.

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