"The otherworldly badlands around you are deathly silent and still. Yet this arid scene is often the result of the violent action of water and earthquakes." (~sign on site)
Long ago, shimmering lakes filled the valley. Silt washed into the lakes creating thick deposits of clay, yellow sandstone, and tan siltstone. Flung into the lakes, hot mud, lava, and volcanic ash caused streaks of color. This created the Furnace Creek Formation. Seismic activity tilted the once level layers. Rainstorms cause gullywashers that continue to carve out this strangely beautiful landscape.
In July of this year, hubby and I began our visit to Death Valley here. Unlike much of Death Valley which is at or below sea level, Zabriskie Point is 713 feet (217 meters) above sea level.
Borax, a combination of the element boron and various salts, has been mined here. (The last of the mines closed in 2005.) Borax can be found in laundry detergent, cosmetics, insulation in walls and roofs, fire extinguishers, ceramic dishes, and the glass in electronic touchpads.
looking down on the parking lot
LINKS: mining in Death Valley, National Park Service hikespeak National Parks Traveler interesting! The 20 MuleTeam borax brand spawned a radio show that later became a TV show. Called Death Valley Days, it ran for many years. Ronald Reagan appeared on this show! (link includes a clip of this show but don't know if Reagan is in it.)
Alphabe-Thursday, hosted by Ms Jenny, is so much fun! This week our letter is "Z." Come visit others' submissions HERE and join in the fun!
PS: uses of Borax: "Borax is well known as an ingredient in high efficiency laundry detergents, but it's most important modern use is in the production of fiberglass and borosilicate glass. The element Boron has powerful abilities to stengthen, toughen and make fire-resistant glasses, metals, wood, and fibers. It is used in appoximately three hundred high-tech products. A few of its uses are as soldering flux, in welding rods, as preservatives for wood and fabric, as fire retardant, in insecticides, in pottery glaze, as antiseptics, in hybrid fuels, and in experimental fuel cells." ~from National Park Service site
The glorious splendor of Fall is captured in sunny Chrysanthemums.
What fun flowers Celosias are! In the Victorian language of flowers, celosia symbolizes warmth, humor, and silliness. I think of them as Dr. Seuss flowers. My neighbor grew plants from seeds and gave me some, most of which were bright pink. The crazy shapes they grew in, made me smile.
a crazy discovery: conjoined black eyed susans growing in my garden. The stem was thick and flat. The center seedhead is almost a continuous oval.
(continuing the "yellow" theme from last week's xanthophyll--you know, the stuff that makes plants yellow.)
Alphabe-Thursday, hosted by Ms Jenny, is so much fun! This week our letter is "Y." Come visit others' submissions HERE and join in the fun!
my backyard--only a couple weeks ago. Now the leaves have mostly fallen. The tall tree with green leaves near the right side is a black walnut. I love the brilliant blues of October skies and the gloriously colored leaves. Now it's November and most of the leaves have blown off the trees.
Wordless Wednesday/ Wordy Wednesday--where I linked up:
My Meyer lemon tree bloomed months ago and some of those blooms developed fruit.
Aah...those blooms are so fragrant!
There are now 7 green lemons busily ripening. It takes a l-o-n-g time for this process to happen--about 6 months. Meyer lemons are self pollinating, and if grown outdoors bees and wind can help. Indoors, the tree may need some pollination help. I've never hand pollinated it but may try on the next set of flowers because it will be inside for the winter.
I've had lemons from this tree before and they were so delicious!
Alphabe-Thursday, hosted by Ms Jenny, is so much fun! This week our letter is "W." Come visit others' submissions HERE and join in the fun!
Scotty's Castle in Death Valley National Park. How wonderful to be under a tree amidst such a dry desert with almost no vegetation!
There was quite a bit of excitement around my house a few weeks ago as dead trees were being removed from my yard and a couple neighbors' yards. Chain saws were buzzing and sawdust was flying! This tree is across the street. It is very tall. This guy is above the rooftop. He's roped in, but leaning backward and loping that branch off with a chain saw. These guys are fearless! I watched him swing from branch to branch like Tarzan! (not the best photo, but if you study it, the tree sawing process seems pretty crazy)
another blurry photo, but shows the beginning of swinging through the trees, chainsaw dangling.
These guys really are fearless!
birds' nest in crabapple
ornamental Clevland pear tree fruit. a pretty golden bronzy color.
At long last, after a couple weeks of no computer, and then another without my hard drive being installed, my new computer is up and running! not perfect, can't access my documents yet, but I do have all my photos. Sadly, I've missed 3 letters of the alphabet! I hope Ms. Jenny won't flunk me!
Alphabe-Thursday, hosted by Ms Jenny, is so much fun! This week our letter is "T." Come visit others' submissions HERE and join in the fun!
Because my hubby and I were attending our niece's wedding in July in San Diego, we decided to visit Death Valley on the way--yep--in the middle of Summer! Here we are having fun with shadows on the western edge of the park looking out to the Panamint Mountains.
The wedding was so wonderful! The ceremony and the reception were held outside. Banners and lights were strung in several courtyard areas.
The day after the wedding, the bride and groom escorted 13 of us into Baja California, Mexico for wine tastings. First up--tacos and paletas. Then we had all the energy necessary to visit 4 wineries! At one of them, there was a grape tasting garden. I wish I remembered what variety these are.
back home again to a waiting kitty!
and a mini garden harvest
My 9 year old twin goddaughters came over to play for an evening. We had lots of fun! Oliver (kitty) enjoyed manlittle girl-handling, we made fun food, and played flashlight tag. This ice cream lady was inspired by Samantha Lee's amazing food art. ("Lola" was made of 2 kinds of ice cream, strawberry lips and cheeks, chocolate sauce eyebrows, hair of oreo-type cookie surrounded by chocolate sauce. A tree was made of cantaloupe branches and pieces of fruit for leaves and blossoms.)
2 trips to Asheville, NC to visit my daughter and SIL. We always work on a house project. Sometimes we explore the town or the mountains. We always have awesome food --and wine. (My daughter's a wine rep!) Recently, we were working on converting a carport into a greenhouse. Alas, we didn't finish.
Yesterday, I was playing around with my iPhone taking photos of my flowers. The asters have just begun to bloom. It must be Fall. See the beetle?
hosted by Ms Jenny, is so much fun! This week our letter is "P." Come visit others'
submissions HERE and join in the fun!