Sunday, June 1, 2014

Collage...for June 2014

From Planet Earth Calendar

River of Ice;  Glaciers have grown and shrunk repeatedly over the last million years.  Presently, Earth is in a relatively warm period, called an interglacial, resulting in the retreat of glaciers.  As part of its evolutionary cycle, Earth has been plunged into cold episodes, called glacials, in which the extent of glaciers is expanded.  These glacials are commonly called “ice ages”.  Glaciers don't just freeze and thaw like ice on a pond.  As they gain mass, they actually “flow like a river of ice.”  The fastest flowing glacier in the world today  is Jakobshavn Isbrae in Greenland.  Measurements taken over a 20 year period showed flow rates ranging from 3.5 miles per year to almost 8 miles per year.  Glaciers are important to the planet in many ways.  They have carved out many of Earth's features.  Glacial ice is also the largest reservoir of fresh water on Earth.

Did You Know?
(from the Canadian Wildlife Federation Calendar)

The large colourful Swallowtail Butterfly is found across Canada and is a common visitor in many gardens.  Their name comes from their unique tails which can resemble the forked tails of swallows.

More than 80% of ocean pollution is caused by human activity on land.  To help our aquatic and marine life, CWF celebrates “Rivers to Oceans” week.  Learn how to help at

Shorebirds, called Red Knots can be seen migrating through eastern Canada as they travel 16,000 kilometres from their breeding grounds in the Arctic to southern Argentina.  One bird, referred to as “B95” made the trip 20 times!

Gardening Advice

Plant Milkweed to help save the Monarch Butterflies.  The number of these beautiful insects who migrate an incredible 64,800 km every year is at a record low.  Milkweed is crucial to the Monarchs' survival.  The plant is commonly grown in fields and open spaces...but increasing development and use of herbicides have taken a serious toll.  Monarchs lay their eggs only on milkweed and is the only food plant which the caterpillars eat.  The milkweed has a beautiful pale mauve addition to its worthy butterfly effect.  Even a weed...can become a beloved plant. (Excerpts from Toronto Star)

Honeysuckle draws Hummingbirds and Butterflies.  It is a climber with the perfect amount of vigour for arbours, trellises, banisters and pillars. It feeds hummingbirds and butterflies with nectar.  The flowers are not only extraordinary, but the vine  blooms off and on throughout the growing season.

Message from the Canadian Red Cross

Drowning deaths are preventable.  Supervision of children is key at home or on vacation.  Supervision by adults is the best protection possible  for children...even those who can swim!


Teen alcohol use kills about 6,000 people each year...more than all illegal drugs combined.

Niagara Falls and Great Gorge
(from Niagara Falls of Canada 2014 Calendar)

Aerial photo of the Canadian Horseshoe Falls
as a Maid of the Mist tour boat approaches the spray.

Water crashing over the Falls drops 52 metres (170 feet) into a basin that is as deep as the Falls are high.  More than 168,000 cubic metres (6 million cubic feet) of water can go over the Falls every minute ~ enough to fill ONE MILLION BATHTUBS.

Special Event Days

June 5 (Thursday) ~ World Environmental Day
June 6 (Friday) ~ 70th  Anniversary of D-Day
June 8-14 (Sun. to Sat.) ~ Canadian Environmental Week
June 15 (Sunday) ~ Father's Day
June 15-21 (Sun. to Sat.) Rivers to Oceans Week
June 20 (Friday) ~ World Refugee Day
June 21 (Sat.) ~ Summer Solstice & National Aboriginal Day

June Musings

If a June night could talk,
it would probably boast that it invented romance.
(Bern William)

It is dry hazy weather...we are more of the earth,
farther from heaven these days.
(Henry David Thoreau)

The air is like a butterfly with frail blue wings;
The happy earth looks at the sky...and sings.
(Joyce Kilmer)

It is better to be a young June-bug
than an old bird-of-paradise.
(Mark Twain)

Roses are red, violets are blue;
But they don't get around like dandelions do.
(Slim Acre)

Flower and Garden Philosophy
Happiness is to hold flowers in both hands.
(Japanese Proverb)

Merle Baird-Kerr...compiled May 4, 2014
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