Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Blunt-leaved Milkweed Seedpod

Morning on the pipeline was overcast, cool (65ish deg?), and breezy-like-the-beach, the steady dampish breeze that makes you glad you wore a long-sleeved shirt.  Daisy and Radu dashed in circles, and then ahead while I stopped to button up. "Come on, Mom!" they said, in body language.  It was wonderful to be outside again, wandering the woods and fields around Middlewood. Birds were singing and crickets buzzing, the Carolina Locusts fluttered as they leapt out of my way.  I love seeing their black wings with wide pale yellow borders as they fly and land 8 or so feet away.  Their drab brown bodies disappear in the dry grass until you approach once more and zzzzzp!  Off they go again.

Flowers blooming this morning:  Man of the Earth, a vine in the morning glory family, with large white blooms with deep purple throats; the early goldenrod (rough-stemmed perhaps?), tiny yellow pencil flower, Woodland Sunflowers (that have held the same blooms for weeks now), Flowering Spurge, Joe Pye Weed, Whorled Coreopsis, remnants of Common Fleabane, down near the creek was Pale Indian Plantain, and near the edge of the woods: delicate white spiraled Slender Ladies' Tresses, a beautiful little orchid.

Buds: Boneset and it's twin (flower but not leaves!) Hyssop-leaved Boneset, the Joe Pyes that had been cropped by deer, and some asters.

I stopped to draw the milkweed plant and sat at the best angle for the seedpod, my back to the wind, which allowed gnats to find my face.  Otherwise, all went well until near the end when Daisy came to sit beside the plant.  She was so sweet, sitting there watching me.... then in a split second she leaned over and chomped at the seedpod!  DAISY, NO!  I called. She jumped away, but milky sap started running down the stem.  I hope it will be ok and the seed pod will continue to dry.  There is nothing in nature more beautiful than the split milkweed pod with it's delicate seeds bursting out.  I hope to draw it this year!



Anonymous said...

oh1 that is a pleasant walk. what is your pipeline? i have a pipeline on my property that runs along lawsons fork - it is a sewer line! we used to run aling it as children crossing over into the next lot and then v cross lawsons fork at a spot where the electric company had connected two cables to cross over to the hugh wire. a hand over hand thing...fun and daring when you are young!

Helen said...

Oh wow. What great memories! Our pipeline is natural gas, running deep underground as they do, with occasional yellow pipes sticking up to identify it. It is very much a prairie because it is regularly mowed every few years. Over on the right of the blog page is a picture of the pipeline in bloom last fall. In the distance you can see the worn road from the pipeline folks. We walk up there around the bend to the left, through a strip of woods and come back along a different pipeline - petroleum, i think. Or we can go through the woods to Lawson's Fork, or climb a fence and keep going on the pipeline to LF, because back in there it makes a sharp turn and heads for the Pacolet River. Anyway, there are three pipelines that run parallel here for about a mile, then go off in different directions. We like it because it expands our world.... plus, it will never change... well, in our lifetime it won't. And, it's not just us...the dogs are in heaven too!