symphyotrichum divaricatum

A Very Colorful Fall Walk

The recent local weather (hot cold hot cold rainy sunny cold hot again), while making wardrobe deliberations a maddening ordeal with at best a 50-50 percent chance of success, have had an unexpected effect.  The local flora, famous for not giving a fig for seasonal expectations and remaining green until January, has decided, for once, to oblige Sigyn’s longing for a colored autumn.

We have therefore embarked upon a tour of the yard, the surrounding neighborhood, and the park at the end of the street, in order to take in all the offerings on this bright and sunny afternoon.

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cedar elm

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pecan

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woolly bucket or gum bumelia (both ludicrous names)

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upland swamp privet (an oxymoron if I ever heard one)

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yaupon holly

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post oak

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aster

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winged elm

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farkleberry

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bitterweed

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more asters

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more yaupon

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ditto (can you tell Sigyn really likes holly?)

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greenbriar

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a whole galaxy of asters  (Time for a little rest.  Dangling is hard work)

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white mulberry

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miniature dragon

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poison ivy  (Go on, human female, pat the pretty plant!)

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more mulberry

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copperleaf (Aptly named, I’d say.)

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More elmage

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honey locust

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bald cypress

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yet more elms

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many shot of a truly splendid farkleberry

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blackjack oak

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They say some medieval craftsman invented stained glass.  I’m not so sure.

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A Very Colorful Fall Walk, Part III: ‘Tis The Season For Poofiness

If there’s anything Sigyn likes more than colorful things, it’s fuzzy things.  Today, we seem destined to run into both.

These little asters may look daisyish and harmless now,

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but when they’re done blooming, the fluffy fruiting heads will spread these plants all over the neighborhood.  It’s a full-time job trying to keep them out of lawns and gardens.

This  bluestem grass has much the same dispersal strategy.

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I’ll have to make sure some floofs find their way into the human female’s hair and socks.

By Fenrir’s Woolly Winter Underwear!  What have we here?!

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Ah, I see now.  It’s one of those weather-prognosticating lepidopterans.  Supposely, one can tell how severe the winter is going to be by the proportion of black to rusty brown in their coats.

Judging by this nearly-all-black one, we can expect a damp and chilly winter with…

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…a ninety percent chance of snuggles.

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It Is Winter and the Garden is Very Confused

According to the Midgardian calendar, today is something called the “Winter Solstice,” the day when this mortal-infested rock does something in relation to its G-type main sequence primary involving synodic rotation and axial tilt and all manner of astronomical foolishness.  Long story short, it is now winter, but you couldn’t prove it by the state of the local flora.

The local elms are bright golden-orange, the ashes are yellow, and even some of the oaks are reddish.  In short, FALL COLOR.  In December.  Ridiculous.  We recently had snow–real, measurable snow, and it fell on blooming roses.  Preposterous!  

Listen, you silly plants, and repeat after me.  “It is WIN-TER and I am supposed to be asleep.”

Sigyn and I are making our way around the yard, exhorting the plants to get with the program.

Here are some little grassy asters, but they get a free pass.  They’re fall bloomers and frequently hunker down and hold over until spring.

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This sunflower, however…  What is wrong with you?!  Your relatives finished blooming and died MONTHS ago!

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The whole thing is highly suspicious.

Likewise this thing that has sprouted in the compost heap?  I don’t recognize it.  Sigyn, do you know what it is?

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What?!  Beloved, surely you are joking!  A potato plant that has come up, all on its own?  In December?!

Absurd.  It must have come up from some kitchen scraps.

But I suppose that also explains this onion, which has done the same thing.

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This is just great.  If we can dig up a recipe for compost heap soupwe’ll be in business.

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Sympathy Flowers and Just-Because Flowers

Since the human female’s going to be Mrs. Hobbly for quite some time, Sigyn, I think our botanical expeditions may have ceased for the foreseeable.  We shall have to content ourselves with whatever flowers come to hand.

A co-worker has sent a bouquet of garden roses home with the human male.  Pink looks good on you!  Or, rather, you look good on pink!

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Although I know red is your favorite.

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The human female’s mother has not forgotten how much you love flowers too.  She went for a walk and picked you a tiny bouquet.  Small as it is, it is still quite an armful!

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I recognize the lavender asters, but I don’t know what the yellow ones are.

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Shall I put those in some water for you?

Perhaps tomorrow you and I should go out and hunt for more, and escape all this business of bruises and boots and blubbering.

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