Even though temps are in the low 80’s this week and humidity is high, the signs are there if you are paying attention.
Next week: A full week (I think) of fog shots
Behold Phragmites Australis, also known as “common reed grass,” “giant reed” or “ditch reed. ” Whatever name this tall (up to 20 feet high) grass goes by, it is a non-native plant that has established a real foothold in Wisconsin, wrecking havoc on shorelines and wetlands, crowding out native species of plants and in some cases, pushing animals from their established cover.
Setting aside those grim facts for a moment (“…but other than THAT, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play?”) I was bedazzled by the reed’s seed head after a recent rain. The rain had temporarily pushed the phragmites down so that many of those red/purple tasseled heads were at my eye level.
The path that meanders around Dragonfly Pond is the one place in the Arboretum that I never walk but after today, I think I will visit more often.
This was truly one of the most delightful rambles I have taken in a long time. The sky was just overcast enough to make for pleasant non-squinty walking and shooting, perfect temps, the trees and shrubs were vying for just how many shades of green they could dazzle me with and the pond smelled richly…pond-like. Pond-like in a good way: a mélange of wet black dirt, green things and quiet water.
A narrow swath of reeds (phragmites) had been chopped down between the footpath and the pond. I found these dried stalks hard to resist: so many shades of brown and gold, so much rough texture.
I came in for some trees and ended up with not only the trees I wanted, but bonus reeds. Plus, there are lots of teasels just off the path, as well as Canadian thistles, so I’ll have to return soon with my trusty 50mm.
Think I was kidding about the incredible display of green-itude crowding into the footpath? Check this out:
“Behold how this drop of seawater
has taken so many forms and names;
it has existed as mist, cloud, rain, dew, and mud,
then plant, animal, and Perfect man;
and yet it was a drop of water
from which these things appeared.
Even so this universe of reason, soul, heavens, and bodies,
was but a drop of water in its beginning and ending.”
A Drop of Seawater by the Sufi poet Al Shabistari
We’ll return to the dill weed tomorrow.