wordsfromanneli

Thoughts, ideas, photos, and stories.


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Last Show

The maple tree overhanging the driveway is almost finished changing colour. Soon it will shed its colourful dress and stand there shivering in bare limbs. The tiny dogwood in the foreground is also getting ready to drop its leaves. One last show of colour and it too will be done.

Here is the maple closer up. A few leaves still have a bit of green but most have turned a golden yellow or orange.

The laceleaf Japanese maple is one of the first to turn reddish-orange. It is normally green, unlike some Japanese maples that are a purple colour for all of its growing season.

This black walnut is an ornamental tree (meaning that the walnuts are not meant to be eaten, like the regular walnuts we know). But the squirrels like them.

These walnuts have a thick green outer shell that peels away, revealing what looks like a regular walnut. The shell, however, is so thick that it takes a sledge hammer to crack it. And yet, that is exactly what I do for the squirrels. They don’t seem to mind the bitter taste of the meaty inside parts.

The video below shows this ornamental black walnut tree losing its leaves to the cool breezes that gust up now and then. The main whoosh of leaves is well into the video, so if you can spare 30 seconds of your life to watch, you’ll see this tree giving it up for another season.

 


24 Comments

Little Tree and Big Tree

Wow! Look at YOU, Little Tree! Just look at all those blossoms! But I wonder why they call you a dogwood. Is it because dogs do something on your wood? Terrible thing to do to a beautiful tree.
No, that’s not why they call me a dogwood. But something has stunted my growth. Would you believe I’m the same age as Big Tree across the street? That’s how it is to grow up on the wrong side of the tracks. I’ve missed out.
Big Tree has spent his whole life in the sunshine near a water tap, while I’ve been thirsty for years, shivering in the shade. You’d think that Big Tree would share his food and water since I have so little, but he doesn’t make a move to help me – I mean social distancing is one thing, but he’s downright unfriendly – won’t even talk to me.
Well, it’s not my fault if I was born with a fertilizer spoon in my mouth. My caregivers are simply smarter than yours. I show them my thanks for the food they gave me. And you’re wrong. I would share with you, but I can’t leave. I’m kind of rooted to the ground.
I see what you mean, Little Tree. He’s twice your size. Does that mean you’re the poor relation? Would you feel better if I tickled your bark to make you smile. I could scratch any itch you might have. All I have to do is run up and down your trunk a few times. Make you feel better….
You think about it and let me know, okay?


33 Comments

Two Coasts, Two Kinds of Snow

Today, May 24th, it snowed a foot or more on the east coast of Canada. This is not normally May weather, even for the province of Newfoundland.

As I stepped outside in my front yard on the west coast of Canada, it looked like snow too. But a second look told me the white “flakes” on the ground were actually tired dogwood petals that had finished blooming.

As I turned to walk towards the front yard, I saw more snow. But this time it was in the shape of snowballs from my snowball bush (part of the viburnum family).

I really sympathize with the Newfoundlanders today, but I wouldn’t want to trade places with them. I like our kind of snow better.


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The Dogwood

For some reason, this is a good year for the dogwood. Local dogwoods are in fine form. Even the little one in our yard is blooming prolifically.

It is the provincial floral emblem of British Columbia.

The Dogwood Speaks Out

 

One day I could be forty-five,

That’s feet in height, I mean.

My flowers are a velvet white

With just a hint of green.

 

Their petals number four to six,

But never all the same, 

And now I’m sure you’re wondering,

“How did it get that name?”

 

In Sanskrit, I am named for “dag,”

Which happens to be “skewer,”

But changing “dag” to “dog” makes sense,

And questions asked are fewer.

 

The berries on my flowers feed

An awful lot of birds,

And deer who want to browse my twigs

Keep munching them in herds.

 

The bears and beavers eat my leaves,

Perhaps they think I’m salad.

Then satisfied, they amble on, 

They burp and sing a ballad.

 

For tanning agents and for dyes,

My bark is useful too.

The Salish and the Thompsons somehow

Knew just what to do.

 

The Cowichans made knitting needles

From my solid wood.

They knitted sweaters with designs

As often as they could.

 

I’m useful and I’m beautiful,

I’m really quite a tree,

For B.C.’s floral emblem

They’ve officially chosen me.