When thistles come undone, then middle summer has arrived, and all the middle-summer flowers are in bloom. Purple loosestrife, lizard’s tail, Queen Anne’s lace, purple coneflower, wild petunia, bouncing bet, dayflower, sow thistle, white vervain, dogbane, black-eyed Susan, square-stemmed germander, pokeweed, St. John’s wort, teasel, touch-me-not, lopseed and avens are all blossoming in the woods and fields.
An important study on possible health impacts of natural gas drilling is still looking for additional funding.
Geisinger Health System spokeswoman Amanda O'Rourke said Wednesday the $1 million grant that was announced in February 2012 remains the only funding for a project that was projected to cost at least $25 million.
Geisinger plans to look at health histories of hundreds of thousands of patients who live near Marcellus Shale gas wells in Pennsylvania. Geisinger is based in Danville.
Now the the days are the longest of the year and the pieces of summer are fitting together like a puzzle solving itself.
Mulberries and black raspberries are sweetest. Milkweed beetles look for milkweed flowers on the longest days; giant cecropia moths emerge. The first monarch butterfly caterpillars eat the carrot tops.
Damselflies and daddy longlegs are everywhere when black raspberries come in. Mosquitoes, chiggers, and ticks have reached their summer strength their presence fitting tightly with that of giant black cricket hunters .
I got up at 4:30 in the morning, haunted by a troubling dream. I listened for birds at my window as I got dressed. Not a sound, not even a car passing on the street. And then I went outside with Bella, my border collie, to walk in the dark.
I started south at 4:50. I heard birds by the time I reached a streetlight: At first just sporadic chirping of robins, then their rhythmic singsong.