Articles & Stories

The Horsehead Nebula

The Horsehead Nebula

Horsehead Nebula. Photo © Morris Yoder. If you’ve ever found the constellation Orion, there’s a good chance you looked right through this complex cloud of dust and gas without realizing it. The...

You Win?

You Win?

Eastern Bluebird and Tree Swallow. Photo © Dreamstime.com. “Chee! Chee! Chee!” The strident notes eddied through the open living room window and pricked my ears. I dropped The War for Mansoul, which...

Spots of Red

Spots of Red

Common Redpoll. Photo © Dreamstime.com. My sister looked out the window and asked, “Is that a redpoll?”We all ran for the window. By then the birds had all flown away, so we had to go over to...

Marvels at Magnolia Plantation & Gardens

Marvels at Magnolia Plantation & Gardens

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens. Photo © Julia Dutill. If you ever have the chance to visit Charleston, South Carolina, I would suggest you visit a lovely public gardens close by—Magnolia Plantation...

Raise Food? Raise Beds!

Raise Food? Raise Beds!

Photo © Dreamstime.com. One of the best ways to reduce tillage and increase our enjoyment of gardening is to construct permanent beds. When we stop tilling, it is important to avoid compaction as...

Ursa Major

Ursa Major

Ursa Major, the Great Bear, is a large constellation in the northern circumpolar region of the sky. Ursa Major is known best for the Big Dipper, which makes up the northeastern part of the...

Raising Mealworms

Raising Mealworms

Eastern Bluebird eating mealworm. Photo © Dreamstime.com. Thank you to the Amstutz family who asked about raising mealworms for bluebirds (February issue). I can hear and see your bluebirds’ happy...

Books, Brothers, and Birds

Books, Brothers, and Birds

Yellow Warbler. Photo © Darren Shank. It was not a good day for birds, I decided. The trees swayed in a brisk spring breeze, and gray clouds scurried overhead. The birds were probably hunkered down....

Once Upon a Wildflower Walk

Once Upon a Wildflower Walk

Photo © Dreamstime.com. “Look, Mary Ella, another contest!” my brother announced. I hurried over to the sofa where he was poring over the pages of the latest Nature Friend.“Wildflower ‘Learning by...

Dandiest Lion of Spring

Dandiest Lion of Spring

Photo © Dreamstime.com. Another school day was over. Eager students burst from the schoolhouse doors and headed for the road toward home.Danny waved and watched them leave for a minute before...

Gardening without Tillage—Why?

Gardening without Tillage—Why?

Photo © Dreamstime.com. I realize that having a garden without tilling might sound strange. My earliest memories of gardening include plowing, disking, and tilling. For many years I never knew there...

Monoceros

Monoceros

Monoceros the Unicorn is one of the most overlooked winter constellations. This is probably because the constellation is sprawling and faint, without an eye-catching shape. Fortunately, Monoceros is...

Our Birding Day

Our Birding Day

Sunday dawned a beautiful morning. The first birds I saw were cardinals—male and female. There were Chipping, English, and House Sparrows at the feeder. Out the kitchen window I saw a Junco and a...