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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Cherries and Books and Mustards and Lilies

This (left) is what comes after blossoms in the cherry orchard. Next, of course, come cherries. Serious growers don't much appreciate nearby wild varieties, such as the choke cherries seen blossoming at the top of today's page, because they can harbor pests that travel to the orchard trees. I have sympathy for farmers (their lot is never easy) but also for the wild things, and I'm pleased that after years of trying I can finally remember which wild ones are the choke and which are the pin cherries. The choke cherries form long blossom strands, something like a necklace.

Exciting book news in Northport this morning! I have just learned that THE COLORS OF BEECH HILL, by Hillary Porter, has been nominated for the next year's round of Michigan Notable Books. A "chapter-book" story for young readers, THE COLORS OF BEECH HILL is set in and around Northport, and Hillary will be appearing at Dog Ears Books later this month, Saturday, June 27, 4-6 p.m. Don't miss the fun!

I don't want to get too excited yet about bringing Doug Stanton, author of HORSE SOLDIERS, from Traverse City to Northport--only because he and I have not yet fixed on a date for his visit, but we are working on that, and I'll keep you posted. Meanwhile, buy and read his exciting book!

Outdoors again (looking for morels, giving Sarah outdoor exercise and lessons), I come upon wildflowers so small and pale they would pass unnoticed were I in a moving vehicle. Four-petaled cresses, members of the mustard family, have flowers much like several garden vegetables.

Wild lily-of-the-valley represents the lily family, along with the wild leeks, of course--onions all, sort of. Or, lilies all? How does the taste of onion change if I think of it as a lily?

Common names of wildflowers shed a charming sidelight on the plants. This little everlasting goes by the common name 'pussytoes.'

Temperatures are still low overnight and in the mornings, but we had some rain, and now we have sunshine, and that's a winning combination.


Gerry said...

Well there's a nice wander about.

I met a dog named Panda at the Central Lake Library today and I thought of Sarah and all the work you do with her. Panda was a very well-behaved dog, even going so far as to give a restrained but joyful high five upon request. All of this while Miss Sadie and the Cowboy were trying to figure out how to rearrange the innards of the car to suit themselves.

P. J. Grath said...

Boy named Sue, dog named Panda. Sarah does not heel without a leash. I don't insist that she trot next to my knee when we're rambling, and in town I don't want to risk her off-leash.