Best Walk Ever (Part 2)Posted: November 25, 2006
A blade of grass, plump with seeds. You need to scroll down at least 2 entries to get caught up (if you haven’t been there already). Not to worry. I think it’s mostly photos and not much reading. I don’t know why I was worried about NaBloPoMo. I’m already past the 30 required entries.
One of the things I like most about the property is the abundance of food for the wildlife. When we bought the land, the former owners had obviously done a great deal of mowing. Year by year, M the Elder and I have made the decision not to mow certain areas (well, ok, it’s an age thing….who wants to spend all their time mowing??). It started the first spring we were here. We planted a wildflower patch over the area that was dug up for the new septic system. Then we watched the timothy grass grow in the meadow. I love the way the wind waves through the grass. As time went on we realized there was an abundance of wildflowers growing in the lawn. Mowing time comes late for us because we enjoy watching the flowers pop up. Our neighbors, with their well clipped lawns, probably hate us for it. We allow the beauty of what they think of as weeds to flourish.
But a weed is simply a plant that wants to grow where people want something else. In blaming nature, people mistake the culprit. Weeds are people’s idea, not nature’s. ~Author Unknown
Looking at the pond through the cattails. I didn’t realize when we bought the property how much upkeep and caretaking it would entail. Keeping back the cattails is one of those projects. They’re lovely to look at (and as a child I remember them being picked dry, then soaked in kerosene, and lit for torches). But they’ll take over the pond, turning it into a meadow, just as the other plants will. We use a combination of eco-friendly herbicides (sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it?) and manually pulling the overgrowth.
In the woods. This is one of my favorite parts of the property, but it’s inaccessible during the warm months. There’s a creek back in the woods and a vernal pool. A very large vernal pool. One that gives birth to millions of mosquitoes, but also gives birth to other creatures that don’t go around sucking out the blood of humans. We’ve learned to enjoy the back part of the property during the cold and dry months. We occasionally run through it during deer fly and mosquito season, but otherwise leave it alone and stay away unless we’re fully dressed for it and thoroughly sprayed with bug repellant. Mosquitoes aren’t so bad, to me, but the deer flies are awful.
I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in. ~John Muir, 1913, in L.M. Wolfe, ed., John Muir, John of the Mountains: The Unpublished Journals of John Muir, 1938