Tuesday, April 12, 2011

First flowers

All it took was one sunny day for the first of the forest’s wildflowers to make their appearance. These dog-toothed violets (or trout lilies) grow every year about two steps from the cabin door. The size of the leaf patch would suggest that I should see 20 blooms or more, but that never happens. Some years I only see a couple of blooms. This year, so far, I have 3 blooms in a row, with a fourth just to the left of these three about to make an appearance. Still, it’s a lot of leaves, a patch perhaps a yard square, for the number of blooms that are produced.

The plants flower very close to the same time each year. Last year I blogged about them on April 14. The patch grows happily right at the end of my driveway and has been there pretty much every year since I’ve lived here. I look for them every April. My biggest problem with them is keeping the dogs out of the patch. I don’t know why they keep nosing around in there. Perhaps it’s simply because they know I don’t want them to be there.

I have a special joy in finding the native wildflowers growing here in their natural habitat. I know people who plant native species around their properties, and I’m glad they choose those instead of cultivated varieties. Still, I prefer finding the plants where they choose to grow themselves, as these do. It gives me the feeling that we are sharing this space, these woods, rather than me telling the space what I’d like to see here. Humans do more than enough of that as it is. Here, I try to let forest just be.


Folkways Note Book said...

Oh, I believe wholeheartedly with your thoughts about wildflowers. They should grow where they are best suited. I love to view nature in situ,-- producing naturally and providing me with new discoveries every year. Your dog-tooth violets are so reflective of mother earth's bounty. -- barbara

Pablo said...

They've been coming up for a couple of weeks in my Ozarks woods, though the white variety rather than the yellow.