Sunday, July 9, 2017

Stuffed nonsense

After all my complaining yesterday, and all the soreness that made it hard to get to sleep, I woke up refreshed and feeling quite well this morning. Even the left arm ache was (mostly) gone. I quickly checked the barometer and found that it had indeed tumbled in the night. At 5 a.m. the reading was 30.17. Relief!
Pronghorn feasting on proso millet

When I research barometric joint pain on the interwebz I find that the science is rather inconclusive on the subject and generally unable to confirm or deny a causal relationship between air pressure and pain. There is no shortage of anecdotal evidence but thus far no mechanism has been identified.  Current theories hold that a falling barometer means less external pressure which might allow joints to swell and impinge on nerves, causing pain. In my experience, I seem to get pain with a high barometer. Go figure.
Nother one

As with most things in nature's universe joint pain is likely caused by more than a single, simple atmospheric change. Doesn't really matter, I guess. Fun to think about, but even more fun to think about when the pain subsides.
Wavyleaf thistle. It's cool.

Yesterday while working on fence down in the canyon near the interstate I noticed a number of Scotch Thistle plants requiring eradication. I went through there in May and killed quite a few but I obviously missed some.
Scotch thistle. Not cool.

Scotch Thistle is invasive and if you let it get out of control it can have a very negative impact on your biosphere. I've found that it's easy to control with a shovel so long as you pay attention and eradicate the new plants when they are few in number. For this approach to succeed you have to kill the invaders before they set seed.

Attractive though.

The thistles are biennial plants. They sprout from seed and grow vegetatively in year one, then in year two they shoot up a stalk, flower, and make seeds. The flowers are actually quite attractive. That's nature for you. What a sense of humor!
Body count.

When they sprout and develop in year one they grow a deep tap root to seek out moisture. To successfully kill the plant you need to get all -- or at least nearly all -- of the tap root. Fortunately the root is very strong and fibrous and therefore tends to stay in one piece rather than break off. Unfortunately toe root is very strong and fibrous and can really put up a fight against being pried out of the ground.

Today, after spending a couple of hours working on fence, I decided to dig thistle. It's a good workout when the temperature climbs above 95.

That's what I told myself anyway.

It did touch 98 degrees today, then the clouds rolled in and the temp began to fall. Be interesting to see if we get any rain or if the clouds will just hold the heat in when the sun goes down. Summer.


  1. Thanks for the post. I hope your face is feeling better, that was a nasty looking cut and too close to your eye.

    Paul L. Quandt

    1. It's feeling about the way it looks, but I've grown accustomed to it. :)

  2. Scotch Thistle is called Bull Thistle around here and you're right, if established is a bear to eradicate.