Are you enjoying Autumn, 2014? The local temperature this morning dropped into the mid 50's. I resisted the urge to turn on the heat. The rest of the weekend is forecast to be sunny and slightly warmer. Meanwhile, I've warmed the cockles of my black Irish heart (as they say) by identifying the pinkish-purplish flower that was noted earlier this past Summer as occurring in scattered local sites. I think we have some fireweed growing here.
roadside fireweed in Chisago County
Photo by J. Harrington
I doubt I'll be able to identify it at interstate speeds, but on local roads, yes. I noticed that, according to the Forest Service, fireweed "... is used for revegetation of mined land. In Alberta, fireweed successfully establishes on mine spoils in alpine and subalpine habitats." Unless I give up my interest in encouraging mining in Minnesota to become more sustainable (not likely) that information may be useful some day. It does raise the question of whether it would establish on mine spoils in locations not subalpine. Despite the winters on the Iron Range, I'm not sure it qualifies as alpine or subalpine. Have you noticed how every answer often just seems to generate another question? On the other hand, I've noticed that fireweed is not so rare as to not have a poem named after it.
in memory of amy clampitt
A single seedling, camp follower
Follower of ashes; followerof the bleached-out, burned-outcascade of buildings, lotfuls
of whitened soil speckled with debrislet down by a gutted churchstill aspiring to an ether-blue sky
centuries gone; followerof scripts apotheosized into smoke,notes lifted into air by flames
that all but threatened the entire lanewith the silence we call a bedof dirt; follower of the match,
the instigator here and abroad,the matutinal magnifying glassfocusing light into unwitting
summer grass, into cruciform twigs;follower of the caveatignored because it was too small;
follower of the fourth-oldest dream—the landscape burning and burning.
Thanks for visiting. Come again when you can.
Please be kind to each other while you can.