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Invasiveness | by annkelliott
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The Nodding/Musk Thistle (Carduus nutans) is my favourite kind of thistle, especially at the stage before the stage shown in my photo, when the pinky purple flower has died and the beautiful pattern of the spiny bracts can be seen more clearly. Flower head is 4-6 cm in diameter. Photographed at the Erlton/Roxboro Natural Area on July 27th, when I called in for a short walk after my afternoon volunteer shift. There were a lot more of these plants this year, so I guess this invasive weed really does spread!


The Government is offering very good rebates to people who replace their central heating furnace for an energy efficient one, but the offer is only for a limited time. My furnace is extremely old and I think it was maybe five years ago that the furnaces in several neighbours' units developed cracks and had to be replaced. We all had to have our furnaces checked for obvious safety reasons. I was told that mine might last another couple of years - and it has been five, so I feel I'm pushing my luck. The question is - do I really want to add more stress and mess to the upcoming stress and mess of having to have my front and patio doors, all my windows, and the roof replaced??? It would be so much more expensive to replace it next year. Also, it will be a nightmare getting to the furnace and working around it, as my basement is now worse than ever, now that I have the contents of the 12 boxes from England (containing so many wonderful sentimental belongings of my parents and my brother) strewn all over the basement floor. I think I might just have to swallow my pride and ask a furnace guy to please close his eyes and not notice the mess, ha. Impossible! Couldn't fall sleep last night, thinking about this, and ended up in my basement in the early hours of the morning, moving a handful of things. Anyone got one of those magic wands I could borrow, lol??? Or maybe even Mary Poppins might be available? Sigh ....

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Taken on July 27, 2011