1 favorite     0 comments    209 visits

1/1600 f/5.0 6.8 mm ISO 100

Panasonic DMC-FZ200

EXIF - See more details

See also...


The Famous Five
SW of Calgary
five in a row
7 August 2015

Authorizations, license

Visible by: Everyone
All rights reserved

209 visits

Too hard to resist

Too hard to resist
Yesterday, 7 August 2015, four of us were extremely fortunate to have the chance to visit the home and highly varied topographic 62-acre property belonging to Frances and David Dover. We felt honoured and privileged to meet and spend time with Frances and David, and also their daughter Carolyn and her husband Clair. A delightful family who welcomed us so warmly into their home and land.

This acreage of grassland, forest, rolling hills - and special gardens - is not far from Millarville, SW of Calgary. In fact, it's in an area that I often drive through when I only have time for, or only feel like doing, a short drive. Amazing what little gems exist out there.

This is not just a beautiful property, but is very special for various reasons. For one thing, read any history of Alberta and you will find the Dover family, including David's mother, Mary Dover. Second, among the trees and open "lawns", there are Peony flower beds, containing 100-150 heritage Peonies, each one different, that have now multiplied to more than 300 plants. Unfortunately, they bloomed a couple of weeks early this year, and all the flowers had gone to seed. Another open area had a different kind of ground cover - Thyme, which smelled wonderful. If I remember correctly, this was the open space where the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra playing on one occasion!

There are two large ponds on the property and another smaller area of water that they hope to turn into a Japanese Garden. There is a total of seven wetland basins, including these. It was while walking around the latter that a large brown 'shape' could be seen through the dense trees - a handsome Moose buck. I will look properly at the four or so photos I just managed to get and will slip one of them into my photostream sometime soon, just for the record, definitely not for the photo quality : ) This was also where a Great Horned Owl was seen flying through the trees by some of us (not me, ha!).

There are grassy paths winding through the acreage, up and down hill, that take David seven hours to mow. They are not pristine, velvety paths, but instead, they seem to take nothing away from the wildness of the whole area. One of the animals that have passed through is the Cougar. In fact, several years ago, I saw a video taken on a nearby (or adjacent?) property, where a 'kill' and night-time camera had been set up and a total of six different Cougar individuals were seen!

Even the Dover's home is unique and beautiful. It is completely built of concrete - floors, walls, ceilings, roof, deck, and so on. A Hummingbird feeder and regular bird feeders, set up on the patio, attract a variety of birds. We sat on the patio after our walk to eat our packed lunches - and to enjoy a delicious Orange Pound Cake that Frances had made for us, along with refreshing Iced Tea - thank you so much for this, Frances! Yesterday, while I was waiting for one of three tiny Calliope Hummingbirds to come back, I was lucky enough to see a little Mountain Chickadee, along with many Pine Siskins. We could also hear a Red-tailed Hawk in the area.

There is just so much I could write about this visit and family. Instead, or for now, I will add several links to more information on the Internet. This was a memorable day for us. Thank you so much, Frances and David, Carolyn and Clair, for being so kind and welcoming us into your home and gardens.



David's mother, Mary Dover (her father was A. E. Cross), was "a dynamic and distinguished Calgarian, particularly known for her work with the military during World War II." As well as being an army officer, and an alderman, she was also a preservationist. See the following link.



glencoe.org/documents/10184/637479/The-History-of-Elbow-P... page 44-45


On the way home, I couldn't resist stopping at this familiar row of colourful old granaries. I had seen someone's photo, taken fairly recently, of the surrounding fields golden with Canola. I was, sadly, too late, but I took a photo anyway - of course!

oddlittlebird has particularly liked this photo


to write a comment.