I collected plants for a bouquet. I had found a tequila bottle which I think must have belonged to one of the previous (probably a long time ago) owners, hidden behind the fridge in a dusty crevice, and, washing it clean, it's very art-deco looking so I was glad to find some flowers to put in it.
I can't tell you how odd and cool it is-how happy it makes me, to make acquaintance again with all of the plants I knew so well as a child, but did not know their name.
So on this day, Alder called out the names as I picked things.
Some I know-I'd know anywhere. Plantain, Dandelion, and Wild Oats! What medicine, and Oh, I love the wild oats! I have such fond memories of the oats behind our house-dry and brown after a long summer, and the first rain perfumed the air with such a warm, yummy fragrance-oatstraw tea all over the place!
What ended up in my bouquet (above) are, Brodia (purple flower-species unsure), a wild tall Hypericum (St. Johns wort), wild yarrow, Oats, one other unknown grass, and an unknown stinky daisy looking thing (sort of looks like feverfew)...ah, yes, we need weed books! They are on their way. Well, not the UC Davis one-it's two volumes and "cheap" is $64, so that one will wait!
While I picked flowers, Alder noticed that there was a 2nd species of oak on the land.
We THINK these two are Blue oak (right) and Valley Oak (left), but we'll have to key them, as well as the herbs and grasses, etc. out before we know for sure, and before I attempt to make medicine out of anything.
While I looked at the ground, Alder looked out at the landscape.
Our land is only 1.5 acres, but right next to it, unfenced are two small peninsulas, one near the house, and the other out on the back of the property, separated by a gully (which will hopefully someday be a pond) and these two peninsulas, if added to our area that we can walk and sit and harvest from, increase the land to probably over 2 acres. At the edge of this back peninsula, half of it falls straight away down about 12 feet to a small wet spot, where there must be something good-we'll find out, and that "creek" goes south up the hill onto the neighbor's land and up to two ponds, while it also goes downhill to the seasonal creek with the large open bed and tall cut banks, that gives the area it's name "Red Bank" district.
The other half of this back peninsula slopes down steeply, but enough to walk down to the bottom there, and just above it is a spot where cat-tails grow, a sign of year round water. Which means a lot of things...
We are both terribly excited to go exploring! I keep telling him though, just watch your feet in the sunny spots. The first time I said that, it got a quizzical look. Snakes. Rattlesnakes. BIIIIG eatin' size rattlesnakes! Oh, I can't wait!