Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Ever Green (Sort Of)

I'm mostly just posting a "pictures and captions" entry tonight, because I have to go back to the office and it's 9 PM already.  I think there was something I was going to write about, but whatever it was fell out of my head a while ago.

Oh!  I remember.  I had a title.  I'll use it.

Following up on last night's entry about the lack of conventional seasons, here are some local trees that illustrate the point further.

Palo Verde, 10/17/05

This tree is a Palo Verde.  The name means "green tree" or "green stick." As you can probably see, the trunk is green.  There are three varieties, which differ in the exact shade of green and I think the shape of the seed pods.  One is called a Blue Palo Verde.  We used to have one, back at the house on Grannen.  I don't remember for sure what the other two are called, and I don't feel like researching it now.

Palo Verde (cropped to show color), 10/17/05

Here's the same photo, cropped and with the saturation boosted a little.  In real life, the bark is at least this green.

Palo verde in bloom, or possible a desert mesquite.

Here's another Palo Verde, probably not a "blue" one.  Or maybe it's a Mesquite tree, since the bark looks pretty black here.

A casual glance might lead you to think this tree is decked out with fall foliage, but 'tain't so.  This was taken in March, when the tree was in bloom.

Palm trees at sunset.

Another very common tree here is the California Palm.  There may be several other species around, but I'm no expert on palm trees.  I don't think any of them are native, but they do well in Tucson.

More palm trees at sunset.

These two palm tree shots were taken on good old Wilmot Road, around sunset on Tuesday, October 17th (today).  The second one is looking west on Fifth Ave.

Deserts have a reputation for being brown and sandy, but that's mostly not true of the Sonoran Desert.  There are a lot of green plants here, but they're adapted to the 11 inches or annual rainfall, with deep roots and mostly narrow leaves, or by being cacti and succulants rather than trees.  I'll show you cacti some other time.

Taken at Target, March 13, 2005

In the spring, if the winter rains were unusually good, the desert can get positively lush.  This photo was taken from the parking lot of Target on Grant Road on March 13th, 2005.  Yes, that tree on the right is yet another Palo Verde.

It's been raining this week, which is unusual for October.  I gather it has to do with the hurricanes, which is odd because weather usually travels west to east.  Our rain is probably related to the hurricane that hit poor Guatamala.  We do get moisture from Mexico, especially during the monsoon.  But the rain over the last several days here was not exactly a downpour.  I'm not complaining.  Considering the way people have been suffering elsewhere, I feel a little guilty even mentioning this.

I took some cloud pictures today, but none of them were all that impressive, so we'll skip those for now.

Check out our Frapper!

A few unrelated notes before I dash for the office.  The Frapper thing above is a mapping thingy for AOL-Jers.  It's just getting started, so go fill it up!  Also, I was almost fooled by a new kind of phishing email tonight.  The subject line is "Question from an eBay member."  In it, someone claims that I didn't send the item the person paid for, and threatens to notify eBay and the police.  This was exceedingly strange, because I haven't sold anything on eBay in five years, and never skunked anyone. (I did have a cookie jar break in the mail, but the post office eventually paid the person's insurance claim).  Also, to the best of my memory, I didn't use this screen name for eBay, except to store photos.  Nevertheless, I was on the verge of asking the person what the  heck he or she was talking about when a fake web page came up, asking me to sign in.  Oh!  That's a funny web address.  It all added up to a scam, but one that was different enough from the usual "verify your info" ones that I was almost caught.  Be careful out there, everyone!


*********** LATER ************

When I got home from the office around 1 AM (let me hasten to assure you that nobody asked me to keep such crazy hours!), the just-past-full moon was directly overhead.  I grabbed the camera.  What with the clouds and all, I couldn't touch the quality of the recent moon pictures by Carly and John S., but here are my two favorites.  I assume the little dot in the second one is a planet.  It was the only thing visible in the sky other than the moon and the clouds.


That's it.  Good night!


ondinemonet said...

I like the rings around the moon. Mysterious and seasonal. That sunset was fabulous! You are doing great!

Always, Carly :)

ryanagi said...

I've seen quite a few of those maps popping up in the last week or so.

georgannawrt said...

Here's another "phishing" conundrum:  how come the only time I receive a PayPal phishing message is right after I've used PayPal?  I even wrote to ask PayPal why this should happen. I guess they're embarrassed into silence.

I've also noticed the spam comes in sets of two.  When one comes in, almost immediately another one arrives, with a diffeent sender, but links to the same spamsite.  Weird.  Internet legends in the making.