Sunday, August 10, 2014

Fascination with Toads

Fascination with Toads

Patricia L. Cummings, 8-10-2014

Today on my daily walk, I passed a stone wall that abutts the new sidewalk courtesy of Concord, NH. At the bottom of said stone wall, I saw something move at the corner of my eye and when I looked a little closer I saw it was a baby toad. This is a good year for toads. I see them in our user-friendly yard probably because Jim does all the mowing by hand not by electric means which results in less attrition of amphibians in the yard. He even build a little toad house in the garden when they can find shade and water. Can you tell we love Nature?

This is a ceramic (salt and pepper) shaker), one of my favorites.
Photos by James Cummings

I have been fascinated with toads since I was a child. Now I wonder what they eat and how they stay alive, being so close to the ground. My guess is that they eat insects, maybe with any luck, they eat ticks. Thinking about toads after seeing one today has renewed my faith. After all, "God" or whatever you call a Higher Presence is keeping the little toad alive. It was so like neighboring twigs the same color, it is a miracle I spotted it at all.

Surprises in the Garden

One time, at the end of gardening season, I was pulling up spent flowers and spotted what I thought was a rock. When I went to reach for it, it moved. The object was a Granddaddy Toad who had burrowed into what he thought would be a good place to overwinter. At that point, I left him to his own devices and left plenty of foliage around him to assist him. Nearby, there was a yellow and black Garden Spider, a spectacular sight. I did not attempt to kill it, such as beauty that it is, and harmless to humans in spite of its intense color that would make anyone think it is poisonous.

We are Part of the Greater Plan

We are only part of NATURE. Take a walk and look around. There is all kinds of inspiration. Today, I saw that the Mullen plants are tall and full of yellow blossoms which will eventually attract yellow goldfinch to its seeds. The Concord grapes along a patch of the sidewalk has ripening grapes that are beginning to show a deep purple color. Our garden is filling our table with abundant and healthy vegetables of all kinds.

Plant a "Promise" in the Ground

"It's a time to reap, a time to sow." The earth is blessing us with abundance all for planting a "promise" in the ground (as a folk song's lyrics say). If we take care of Nature, Nature will take care of us. Home gardening is fun, even if it is pot gardening, if you have an apartment.

A Time to Reflect

Today I really enjoyed my brief stroll up the road. It is always fun to check in on the neighbors and their attempts to beautiful their landscape by adding garden ornaments or by changing the configuration of plantings in their yards. I can say that at least for the moment all seems "right" in my world. I hope that you will take the time to explore Nature in your own backyard. There is room for us all.

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