Monday, August 26, 2013

Bunny takes a shower

While bathing,Cloody was so relaxed that he actually fell asleep. It's so beautiful and funny!
As for all the negative comments, I hold him in a baby position in my arms as well and it relaxes him to sit that way so he falls asleep. He also enjoys a body massage, except for his feet. After his baths he goes outside to dry off as usual. Rabbits rarely bathe because they can use their tongues to clean themselves, but since he can't reach his back he likes the water.

Alnwick Poison Garden - England

The Poison Garden



The first garden was laid down in 1750 by the 1st Duke of Northumberland, who employed Capability Brown, the celebrated gardener, to landscape the parkland adjoining Alnwick Castle.

The 3rd Duke was a plant collector, and led a century of development at Alnwick - he brought seeds from over the world, and pineapples were raised in hothouses. In the middle of the 19th century, the 4th Duke created an Italianate garden featuring a large conservatory, and at the end of the century, the gardens were at their grandest, with yew topiary, avenues of limes and acres of flowers.

During World War II’s Dig For Victory campaign, the garden was turned over and provided food, and soon afterwards the austerity of the 20th century saw the garden fall into disrepair. It was closed as a working garden in 1950.

Redevelopment of the garden was instigated by Jane Percy, Duchess of Northumberland, in 1997, and is being created by Belgian landscape designers Jacques and Peter Wirtz. It is the most ambitious new garden created in the United Kingdom since the Second World War, with a reported total development cost of £42 million.

The first phase of development, opened in October 2001, involved the creation of the cascade and initial planting of the gardens. In 2004 a large 6,000 sq ft (560 m2) 'tree house' complex, including a cafe, was opened. It is one of the largest treehouses in the world.
In February 2005, a poison garden, growing plants such as cannabis and opium poppy, was added. May 2006 saw the opening of a pavilion and visitor centre, designed by Sir Michael Hopkins and Buro Happold, which can hold up to 1,000 people. The pavilion and visitor centre feature a barrel-vaulted gridshell roof.

The garden now belongs to a charitable trust, which is separate from Northumberland Estates, although the Duke of Northumberland donated the 42-acre (17 ha) site and contributed £9 million towards the development costs.

‘These Plants Can Kill’: Hazardous Horticulture at The Poison Garden

Science meets myth and legend in The Poison Garden, where stories are told of certain plants that are so deadly that they need a special licence to grow there at all. It was created by the Duchess of Northumberland who noticed there was a wealth of gardens worldwide which contained healing plants, but a lack of any that showcased lethal flora.

The Alnwick Gardens are a group of public gardens attached to Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, England. The castle itself is the second largest in Great Britain. One of the gardens that helps make up the Alnwick Gardens is the Alnwick Poison Garden. This garden boasts some of the world's most dangerous plants, hence the name.

Alnwick Castle - Northumberland

The cascade fountain

The history of the Alnwick Gardens goes back to 1750. The modern gardens were designed after a long period of neglect. The current Duchess of Northumberland decided to revamp the gardens when she became mistress of Alnwick Castle. The project began around 2000, but she did not begin the Poison Garden until five years later. The Duchess wanted a garden that was filled with narcotic, poisonous and deadly plants. The initial design included some medicinal plants, but she had them removed to maintain the concept of the Poison Garden.

The Duchess of Northumberland had father and son garden designers Jacques and Peter Wirtz design the modern Alnwick Gardens. Besides the Poison Garden, there is the Rose Garden, the Tree House, the Serpent Garden, the Ornamental Garden, the Bamboo Labyrinth and more. The Poison Garden has arguably the most socially significant purpose of all the Alnwick Gardens. Guests who visit the Alnwick Poison Garden are led by guides who teach them about the plants and about drug abuse prevention. The drug abuse prevention message stems from the plants that reside in the Poison Garden.

The plants that grow in the Alnwick Poison Garden could be used to make an array of illegal narcotics. There are poppies, which are used to make opium. There is Atropa belladonna, also known as deadly nightshade, which is famous for its use as a poison. Belladonna is also a hallucinogenic. Cocoa also grows in the Poison Garden. Cocoa sounds like a lovely plant, but it is actually used to make cocaine. Strychnos nux-vomica is another deadly plant, which is used to make strychnine. Also included are hemlock, cannabis and more.

The Poison Garden at Alnwick Gardens is on around the clock surveillance for the safety of the public and would be thieves. Some of the plants are even kept in specially fenced areas to avoid accidental poisoning of theft of the plants for use in making narcotics. The message at the Poison Garden is anti-drug, so it is of the utmost importance that the plants there be used to educate the public, not harm people.

The heavy black gates that lead to The Poison Garden are reminiscent of an ancient cemetery gateway. Emblazoned upon them is a ghastly skull and crossbones motif and the ominous words: “These Plants Can Kill”, written in bold capitals.

The Treehouse

The enormous and beautifully crafted Treehouse is built from sustainably sourced Canadian cedar, Scandinavian redwood and English and Scots pine. It sits high in the treetops in a copse of mature lime trees and looks as if it’s been there forever.

There are walkways in the sky and wobbly rope bridges for bouncing on, all accessible by wheelchair and buggy. On the Treehouse’s deck there’s the Roost, one of The Garden’s education rooms, which shows films and hosts activities at certain times of the year.

At the heart of the Treehouse is one of the most beautiful and unique restaurants to be found anywhere in the world. There’s a roaring log fire in the centre of the room, trees growing through the floor, handcrafted furniture and screens created from fallen branches. Most importantly, the locally-inspired food is delicious.

Part of the Alnwick Garden in Northumberland, The Poison Garden is set in the grounds of Alnwick Castle, home to the noble Percy family for 700 years. Henry Percy, known to literature as Harry Hotspur, was immortalised on stage in Shakespeare’s Henry IV.

The castle itself featured as Hogwarts in the first two Harry Potter films and stood in for Nottingham Castle in Richard Carpenter’s Robin of Sherwood.


Chile’s Vanishing Patagonian Lake

Santiago, Chile. In less than 24 hours Lake Cachet II in Chile’s southern Patagonia vanished, leaving behind just some large puddles and chunks of ice in the vast lake bed.

The lake’s water comes from ice melting from the Colonia Glacier, located in the Northern Patagonian ice field, some 2,000 kilometers south of the capital, Santiago.

The glacier normally acts as a dam containing the water, but rising temperatures have weakened its wall. Twice this year, on January 27 and March 31, water from the lake bore a tunnel between the rocks and the glacier wall.

The result: Lake Cachet II’s 200 million cubic liters of water gushed out into the Baker river, tripling its volume in a matter of hours, and emptying the five square kilometer lake bed.

Cachet II has drained 11 times since 2008 — and with global temperatures climbing, experts believe this will increase in frequency.

“Climate models predict that as temperatures rise, this phenomenon, known as GLOFs (Glacial Lake Outburst Floods), will become more frequent,” said glaciologist Gino Casassa from the Center for Scientific Studies (CES).

Casassa, a member of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, told AFP there have been 53 similar cases of lakes draining in Chile between 1896 and January 2010, with increased frequency in the later years.

ES research assistant Daniela Carrion was camped out with a small research team taking measurements of the Colonia Glacier when the lake drained in March.

“When we woke up, we saw a change in the valley,” Carrion told AFP. “The paths that we walked on had flooded, and the whole area was filled with large chunks of ice.”

The lake dropped 31 meters when the water drained out, according to a report from the General Water Directorate, which monitors lake levels in Chile using satellite data.

When the lake starts draining an alarm system is triggered, giving residents in the sparsely-populated area up to eight hours to move animals and flee to higher ground.

The Tempanos Lake, also in far southern Chile, drained in a similar fashion in May 2007. Forest rangers working to save endangered huemuls — mid-sized deer native to the region — were surprised when they came across the empty lake. There were ice floes on the floor of the ten square kilometer lake bed, but no water.

Forestry officials had visited Tempanos in April and it was full, and when a team of scientists and naval officials flew over the area in July they found that the lake, which also is fed by waters from a nearby glacier, was starting to re-fill.

The GLOF phenomenon is not exclusive to Patagonia: it has happened in places such as the Himalayas, and in Iceland due to volcanic activities, Casassa said.

In a phenomenon also related to rising temperatures, a slab of ice the size of a city block broke off Peru’s Hualcan glacier and slid into a high mountain lake with destructive consequences in April 2010.

The crash unleashed a giant wave that breached the lake’s levees, inflicting a tsunami of mud on a village in the northern province of Carhuaz that destroyed more than 20 homes and left 50 people homeless, regional Civil Defense chief Cesar Velasco told the state Andina news agency.

A 2009 World Bank report said that in the last 35 years, Peru’s glaciers have shrunk by 22 percent, leading to a 12 percent loss in the amount of fresh water reaching the coast, home to most of the country’s citizens.


Danver’s State Hospital, Danvers, Massachusetts

Chance of Paranormal Activity - 4

Status - Demolished, Residences

Investigation Ease - 2


The State Lunatic Hospital at Danvers was constructed in the spring of 1878 near Danvers, Massachusetts. It constructed according the Kirkbride Plan after Thomas Kirkbride a prominent psychiatrist in Philadelphia in the mid-1800s. It was constructed at a cost of $1.5 million.

The hospital was originally 2 main center buildings with 4 radiating wings and a tower measuring 130 feet in height. It was built to house 500 patients with the possibly of putting 100 more in the attic however by the 1930′s and 40s it housed 2,000 patients with severe over crowding.

The site was also used as a nurses school and a pathological laboratory.During the 1960′s the hospital began to explore alternative treatments and de-institutionalization and the inpatient population began to decrease. Because budget cuts the hospital was closed in June of 1992.

In December of 2005 the property was sold to Avalon Bay Development and despite a public outcry and a legal case (of which there have been many complaints about the courts handled it) all buildings slated for demolition were destroyed by June of 2006. Avalon’s plan was construct apartment complexes on the site however in the early morning hours of April 7, 2007 a large fire broke out in all of Avalon’s construction trailers and 4 of the apartment buildings.

Only the original facade of the administration building was left but it also burned in the tremendous heat from the fire. The fire was visible from Boston 17 miles away and the webcam Avalon had set up on the site suddenly quit transmitting at 2:03 am possibly due to the fire. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The Danver’s State Hospital location is now an apartment complex called Avalon Danvers but there are numerous complaints about treatment by the buildings managers, high rent increases, large amounts of noise, vandalism, domestic violence and other crimes as well as electrical problems. There are also complaints of dangerous people living in the complex and nearby. It could be that Avalon is just not a good property manger or is the site really cursed?
The team have always said that laughed at people who move into the site of a demolished psychiatric hospital (what were they thinking?) but after reading some of their letters I have to say I really feel sorry for them as well.


The original name for Danvers was Salem Village. This is where the Salem Witch Trials were held not in the current town of Salem. People were actually hung on Hawthorne Hill where the hospital was built.

Jonathan Hawthrone, perhaps the most fanatical judge in the infamous Salem Witch Trials, is said to have lived in a house on the same hill long before the hospital was built. He over saw the deaths of 23 innocents.

The mold infested crops that have been said to have caused the hallucinations that lead to the Salem Witch Trials are said to have been grown on the same hill as the hospital was built.

By the 1940s faced with intense overcrowding the hospital resorted to brutal techniques including early-style shock treatments, lobotomies and hydrotherapy (total immersion in freezing cold water).

Dozens of requests were made to perform seances on the property to the Massachuetts Department of capital Assets who owned the property during the period of abandonment. All were denied.

Jeralyn Levasseur lived on the property as a child in a house lent to her father by the Hospital administrator. She remembers hearing footsteps in the second storey hallways when no one else was home as well as doors that would open and close as well as lights flickering. She also remembers her brother and sister seeing the apparition of an older woman scowling at them. When she was in high school all of the covers were ripped off her bed when no one else was in the room.

There are 2 schools of thought about the site. One says it is purely haunted by the incredible amount of negative energy from both the witch trials and the horrific treatment of the overcrowded patients at the hospital. The other school says the actual ghosts of former innocents killed in the witch trials and the former patients still walk the grounds.

Paranormal Activity

Countless apparitions of both former patients and staff, shadow figures, phantom sounds of voices, laughter, crying, screaming and every other imaginable sound, feelings of being touched, pushed and tugged at, feelings of being watched, not being wanted, general unease, intense and uncontrollable fear and intense overwhelming sadness, reports from people of having their names spoken, doors opening and closing on their own, electrical disturbances, light anomalies, mysterious mists and glows and pretty much any other paranormal activity ever experienced.
A feeling of intense evil is said to hang over this area (perhaps pre-dating the hospital) that seems to exist to this day.

Danvers Avalon Today

For the best look at the hospital in its abandoned state but before construction was began please watch the movie “Session 9″.

Directions to Danvers Avalon the site of the hospital before it was destroyed.

From 95 North

Exit 49 (Rte 62 Danvers/Middleton) Left at Stop sign Straight through 1st traffic light Left at second traffic light onto Old Maple Street. Arrive at Hathorne Hill. Make an immediate right onto Kirkbride Drive.

From 95 South

Take exit 50 onto Route 1 South toward Route 62/Middleton. Turn right onto Route 62 West toward Middleton. Turn left at first traffic light onto Old Maple St. Arrive at Hathorne Hill. Make an immediate right onto Kirkbride Drive.