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Posts Tagged ‘south’

back deck, late Sunday nightSnowmageddon. Epic Snow. Southern Blizzard. I am sick of snow! We normally have a few flurries here and there and maybe a couple-inch snow once or twice over an entire winter here in our area. Only three weeks into the winter season, we have already had snow 3 or four times! We had a white Christmas here for the first time in more than thirty years, and right now we have almost a foot of snow! It started snowing a little past midnight last night, and this morning, we measured 11 and a half inches on the ground, with much deeper drifts. We’ve had flurries off and on all day, so it’s probably a foot by now. No power outages so far for our area, but the trees are bending under the weight and we are still under a winter storm warning until tomorrow morning. And, oh joy, freezing rain and sleet is expected as well…
Here are a few snapshots I took from the windows and porch — the snow is too deep to venture out into.

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a chickadee on suet feeder
A chickadee on a snow-covered suet feeder earlier today.

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snowy woods at front yard
Looking across to the woods from front yard.

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snow covered table
Snow-covered outdoor furniture.

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gazebo in snowy woods
Gazebo covered in snow, note all the birds in the surrounding trees.

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snowy woods
Snowy woods.

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snowy hemlock front steps buried in snow slope behind house
Snowy hemlock, buried front steps, slope behind house.

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Only 68 days till Spring!

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Although the grasses and smaller trees along the roadsides are starting to show a little fall color, the mountains are still mostly green. This is a late evening view of the railroad trestle over the lake in the distance, with the hazy Great Smoky Mountains in the background. Click photos (taken October 1st) to view desktop size.

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grasses
Foreground grasses

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great smokies and railroad trestle over lake
Background in focus, hazy Great Smokies with lake and railroad trestle

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kudzu to the top of a treekudzu covering a power pole“Southerners must close their windows at night to keep the kudzu out…”

Quote from The Amazing Story of Kudzu

Photo at left: Kudzu to the top of a tall tree, at right: kudzu covering a power pole

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giant kudzu covered treeDriving into town this past weekend and seeing mile after mile of Kudzu (Pueraria lobata) covered land, it’s easy to see the truth in the above quote. This horribly invasive vine can grow up to a foot a day here in the spring and summer, quickly covering everything in it’s path, including trees and every other native plant, fences, power poles, houses and yards, barns, millions of acres of land in the southern U.S. These photos were all taken within a few miles, some through the windshield of the car so they’re not the best quality, but you can definitely get an idea of this invasive monster vine and how it grows here in the humid south. Click on any of these photos to view larger versions.

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kudzu monsters
Kudzu Monsters along the railroad tracks.

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kudzu covered trees
Kudzu covered trees along the edges of a field.

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kudzu covering a slope
Covering a slope (and every other small plant and tree) along the highway.

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kudzu covering trees
Monstrous shapes of kudzu-covered trees and shrubs.

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sprayed kudzu on road signkudzu sprayed along railroad tracksIt is depressing to me to see so many acres of land covered in this ugly vine. The state sprays the vine when it covers roadside signs, power companies spray it when it covers the poles and cables, and the railroad sprays a little to keep it from covering the tracks. kudzu growing on cablesI know that it takes many years of specific herbicide use to kill it but I see no real widespread effort to eradicate this cancer in the south. Private landowners spray it with herbicides in early spring and summer to try and slow it down and then mow it repeatedly to keep it from covering houses and yards, but still it grows, on and on… covering more and more land and killing more and more trees and other native plants.

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kudzu covered roadsides
A kudzu-covered roadside.

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kudzu
A Kudzu world.

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covering trees covering a tree near power lines Kudzu (Pueraria lobata)

kudzu on ground and trees look at the spooky shapes of kudzu maybe there are trees under there?

more kudzu trees covered with kudzu woods around the recycling center

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kudzu blooming again right nowI took all these photos on Saturday. Since then, we have had more than two inches of much needed rainfall. It’s the first real rain we have had in many weeks and we surely needed it, but I shudder to think about the growth spurt all that water will probably give the kudzu. :) Photo above: Kudzu blooming again right now!

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Some of the information here was reposted from an earlier article I wrote in 2007 about kudzu. See this previous post for more about this terrible vine, including more about how it grows, closeup photos of the leaves and plenty of comments about possible uses for this vine:

Kudzu, The Vine That Ate The South

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I think this is the longest, coldest winter I can ever remember. We are not used to snow and cold like this in the south! No deep snow and it doesn’t stay on the ground too long but it’s just been constant for more than two weeks now. For days we have had snow which turns to flurries, the flurries turn to ice and sleet, the ice turns to rain and more rain and flooding… I am so ready for spring.

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snow covered leaves and branches
Snow covered leaves and branches

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a moment of late evening sun viola covered with snowflakes snow flakes
A moment of late evening sun, snow covered viola, snow flakes

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