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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Pussytoes and Cat's Feet

No fog this morning
as we stand at the at the edge of the curve 
like a harbor, protecting a crescent of
abundant blossoms
sitting in the morning silence 
like little cat's feet 
(by Nellie Howard with apologies to Carl Sandburg)

A morning like this is made for poetry.  Flowers flow out of our earth like syllables flow from my tongue when inspiration is right.
Once we have identified the pussytoes, we move on to find more.

Our beloved native trillium, Trillium grandiflorum, blooms next to despised mustard garlic, Alliaria petiolata, an invasive species native to Europe.  While teams of evironmentalists work diligently to destroy this invader, I, in my ignorance, take delight in its petite flower atop a slender stalk, riged, unbending among the natives. The simplistic large blooms of the giant white trillium share the hillside with the complicated blossom of squirrel corn, a wild member of the bleeding heart family.
In this area, squirrel corn grows side-by-side with dutchmen's britches, both spring ephemerals pollinated either by bumblebees who pry open their petals or by honeybees who drill a hole straight into the blossom to retrieve hidden nectar. Neither plant will make the effort to support leaves through the summer, choosing, instead, to put all their energy into an early bloom which will disappear with its leaves by the time these fiddleheads fulfill their promise of full-fronded ferns. (If "fronded" is not a word then it should be.)


GardenJoy4Me said...

My goodness what a wonderful post ! You are using the same template as I am as well !
I had to actually order trillium and the Dutchman's Breeches from a mail order nursery .. I have more shade garden happening from my maple tree so adding these sort of plants are wonderful fun for me : ) The large white Trillium is our provincial flower and I have it on my license plate too : )
I enjoyed your poetry and pictures very much : )

Naturedigital said...

Beautiful photographs.