Poet, Playwright, Workshop Facilitator
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Welcome to daily nature photo and creative writing blog, #NewThisDay

Welcome to my daily nature photo blog

Writing from My Photo Stream ~ Kelly DuMar


#NewThisDay Writing From My Photo Stream

Helianthemum canadense: frostweed

Helianthemum canadense: frostweed

How lucky I am to find this frostweed bloom this morning by the railroad tracks on my early walk. Bright lemony buttery yellow - a gorgeous bloom, it catches my eye, growing in a patch of gray gravel by the side of the tracks as I pass. I don’t know what it is, I do not know its name. and so when I get home I look it up and discover Helianthemum canadense has flowers that open only in sunlight and last only one day. Today was my lucky day. This morning I found so many plants that made me smile spontaneously. Certainly, frostweed was one. Also, the jack-in-the pulpits gathering in little cliques, and the cheerful pinks are still in bloom under the trees at the side of the tracks. I took the trail that would lead me past the thick thick ferns and the trillium that grows in the midst of them. I don’t want to miss the *Indian cucumber-root in bloom - it’s so easy to miss this.

You must bend down on your knees and look up underneath the top layer of leaves. It is then that your face will be filled with the fronds of wild fern and you will smell deliciously fresh green summertime.

She calls to me and calls to me down the stairs. I have promised to help her with her room project today, her third day of cleaning/reorganizing/packing. I have just a bit of work to finish, and then I join her. Immediately, in the chaos of piles of discards and piles of keepers that must be hung and bags of waste I feel glad to be involved. This is what I’ve needed, to be in her presence, helping to sort, touching and smelling the items she’s letting go of: she wore this sweater practically every day for a year. Goodbye. Her closet has been overstuffed for years – she keeps and uses her things for years and years, growing out of growing into. But now, there is an acceptance; a time to relinquish what is truly outgrown. I help for as long as I can, and then, this evening, as my husband and her boyfriend and I sit after dinner on the deck, she asks if anyone wants to see her room. And, of course, we all say yes, climb the stairs, admire the transformation. Her suitcase for Costa Rica is packed and ready.

Indian Cucumber-root (Medeola virginiana)

Identification of Indian Cucumber-root

Wildflowers of the Adirondack Park: Indian Cucumber-root (Medeola virginiana) on the Heaven Hill Trails (20 June 2017).

Wildflowers of the Adirondacks: Indian Cucumber-root's inconspicuous greenish-yellow, nodding flowers appear below the top tier of leaves. Indian Cucumber-root on the Heaven Hill Trails (20 June 2017).

Indian Cucumber-root is an erect plant which grows one to two feet tall and has hairy, unbranched stems. The root of the Indian Cucumber-root consists of thick, tuber-like rhizomes, which have a brittle texture.

*Indian cucumber-root

*Indian cucumber-root

The leaves are whorled and lance-like, with pointed tips. Indian Cucumber-root is two-storied, with two tiers of leaves. Plants that are going to flower have two tiers of leaves. The upper whorl overhangs the flowers. Non-blooming plants have only the lower tier.

The foliage of one-tiered Indian Cucumber-root plants resemble that of Starflowers. However, the veins of the Starflower are pinnate, meaning that there is one main vein running from the base of the leaf to the tip, with secondary veins branching off at intervals. By contrast, the veins of an Indian Cucumber-root leaf are parallel, with the curving veins run parallel from the leaf base to the tip.

The inconspicuous greenish to yellow nodding flowers emerge from the center of a whorl of three leaves at the top of a slender, woolly stem. The flowers are 1/2 inch wide and appear on stalks that sometimes bend down below the leaves. The flowers have petal-like segments with turn backward. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs). The stamens are red to purplish. http://wildadirondacks.org/adirondack-wildflowers-indian-cucumber-root-medeola-virginiana.html

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