Weeds, Water, And Words

Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them.  ~A.A. Milne

Dirt Man and I hiked a trail at Back Bay today and returned via the beach. It is off season so pets are allowed. Wylie was thrilled to be allowed to accompany us. For some reason I seemed to be focused on weeds today. Through many of our hikes, Dirt Man has pointed out weeds and declared some of them to be invasive or a nuisance. I always seem to try to correlate nature with human relationships. I started thinking about how we can be intrusive or invasive into the lives of others, especially in the lives of those we love. Each of us has probably felt that our parents have behaved in this manner at one time or another. And if you have children, you have probably stepped over the boundary a time or two, not out of nosiness but purely out of concern. We always want what is best for the people we love, and we seem to think we know better than they do.

This looks like Cousin It to me, but Dirt Man swears it’s called Weeping Love Grass. I tend to trust his knowledge more than mine, and as far as I know the Adams haven’t put out a missing persons bulletin for Cousin It.

Grasses, weeds, and reeds overwhelm the marsh areas. They offer a layer of protection for duck and other waterfowl. Often things in life that appear to be a nuisance do offer some sort of comfort on other levels whether we like to admit it or not. I suppose the question is whether the comfort outweighs the annoyance. 

These cattails appears to be sloughing their velvet coating which I assume distributes its seeds. Cattails are must be restrained as they can easily grow out of control. They are fast growing and invasive. However, they are also considered the most useful emergency food source. Personally, I’ve always held a special affection for cattails. The deep earthy brown tone and the velvet smooth surface stuck on the end of a reed with sharp crisp grassy leaves has always held my attention. I find it one of the most beautiful yet complex plants in the marsh areas. And really, maybe it just stills my heart because it is native to the soapstone quarries where I grew up.

Whether we decide our “weeds” to be irritants or security, it will all reflect back on us. We will see its value in how we live.

As always in the most common of all things, beauty shines. It reaches out and pulls us in. We all want to be a part of it. Though many consider the reeds and grasses to be pests, they also have the ability to be harvested for food and fiber if needed. There is potential in almost everything; the choice is in how we use them.

I’m not sure if these are snow geese or swans in the background. They were too far away to get a good visual. Dirt Man wasn’t wearing his glasses, and you all know I can’t see jack crap. Still, we were soaking in all we could see. What we couldn’t see wasn’t all that important because we could feel the moment. A soft wind carressed us and a trickle of sunshine warmed us while we listened to the many calls of the various waterfowl.

I took one last lovely shot of the marshlands before we veered onto the beach access.

Seeing the wave formation across the sand dunes really helped me understand how some of those mountains we hiked out West were created through time and weather. It looks lonely yet content and hopeful.

While the dunes appear to be a barren wasteland, it thrives with vegetation. Even when we lack abundance, we still seem to get all that we need.

Sea grass and a feather constitute the simple debris that has washed upon the shore. These appear to be cast offs, trash, un-needed items, yet they might just become part of a nest or something equally useful.

Wylie patiently waits for us to finish picnicing and takes a little rest before heading down to play on the beach. She appears to be absorbing the moment through all of her senses, though her nose usually rules.

Though it was cloudy, the temperature was perfect, about 65. It wasn’t overly bright and sunny and there was a gentle breeze, not too chilly. The roar of the ocean and crashing of the waves reminded us that we were not alone, though we had not seen a soul for the first four miles of our hike. The solitude was heavenly, fabulous thinking atmosphere.

This was the last beach scene before heading back through the dunes to the parking lot and into the real world again. I love the composition of wood, sand, water, and sky all in one picture. We walked in awe of all of the power surrounding us, and still we felt we somehow fit into this picture.

I love the texture of the ripples across the sand and the waves in the sand dune. I am always amazed that vegetation can flourish in the sand. It reminds me that even in my times of drought, I can survive.

Earth and sky join hands on the last dune as we end our hike.

What is a weed?  A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, Fortune of the Republic, 1878

34 thoughts on “Weeds, Water, And Words

  1. I swear Suzicate, I’m thinking about digging up all my plants and just letting the weeds have all of it. They seem to do so beautifully year in , year out. Maybe I will even plant a few this spring. Who needs roses anyway?

    • I never plant anything that requires me to take care of it. I love perrenials. Once my MIL cam to visit and said ” You do realize that garden is filled with chick weed, don’t you?” I replied, “Oh, that’s what it’s called. Lovely, isn’t it?” I don’t think she was impressed with my gardening knowledge.

    • Yes, it is similar. I am only slightly over an hour away from Chincoteague Island…there’s a post on that in my Virginia is for Lovers folder. We went last Fall and hope to go again soon, but this time on bikes.

  2. As I was reading this I got an incredible feeling of peace, Suzi.

    I so enjoy how you use your beautiful photos and weave such enlightening words through them. It’s like taking a wonderful journey!

    Oh, and I LAUGHED at this…..

    “This looks like Cousin It to me.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA….it does! I LOVED The Addams Family!

    Have a marvi Monday, dear lady!


  3. “While the dunes appear to be a barren wasteland, it thrives with vegetation. Even when we lack abundance, we still seem to get all that we need.” I wanted to weep myself when I read this line.

    You do such a good job of finding the Beauty amidst life’s weeds. At EVERY level. This is not just a gift, it is cultivated.

    Nice work tending the garden.

    (and can I just say…love the drift wood; so lonely and melancholy, yet so regal.)

    • Weeping Love Grss seems like such a silly name…wish I could’ve remembered the names of all the other weeds and reeds, but didn’t want to ask again while I was writing my post.

  4. Your photos and words severe to remind me that our perceptions of things in this life can greatly differ. Where one see beauty someone else sees only weeds. It is a good reminder that we should not be so rigid in our thinking that we can not open our eyes to new ways of looking at things.. Lovely post!

  5. Whoa! That Weeping Love Grass looks like hair! I am not so good about thinking of plants as weeds. Unless it is taking over something else, I don’t think of it as a weed. I just think of them as plants. Even plants that are not weeds can be intrusive. Our lemon tomatoes have grown unchecked and killed at least two rose bushes in our yard maybe three or four. I wouldn’t say that tomato plants are weeds, but if taking over the yard and killing other plants is what makes a plant a weed, then they are weeds.

    GREAT pictures. Thank you, as always for sharing!

    • Lots of plants are invasive, especially those of the mint family. I’ve always heard that you have to be careful which herbs you plant together. Weeds are so pretty, that I always have a difficult time differentiating them from other flora.

      • We have mint in the yard and it is not so bad. It has stayed in its spot, but the tomatoes — killed the roses. Time to re-do the yard. 🙂

        I think I have trouble picking out the weeds too. I think I do better with people than plants. 😉

  6. I need to come up with new words, but so far I have only the ones I use over and over with your blog – I so enjoy your pictures and your words. I am learning to accept some weeds as plants in my flowerbeds – mainly because I no longer wish to spend eight hours a day weeding. If they’re plants, they do not need to be pulled. Your weeds are wonderful – I would so like to have an area like that in which to walk!

    • I wish I was a gardener like you and could cultivate lovely flowers. I choose ones that thrive on their own and enjoy them even with the weeds sharing the bed!

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