Saturday, May 4, 2013

May 4: Mayflowers

I spent several hours tramping around the greening woods of the Ducktrap River Preserve this morning. Some first spring sightings of warblers, including a beautiful sunlit view of a singing Blackburnian amid the hemlocks, and some first wildflowers, like this Trailing Arbutus.

Commonly called mayflowers, Trailing Arbutus flowers are often tucked away under its big leathery leaves. My grandmother, who would have been 99 in a few days if she were still alive, loved these best because they always bloomed in time for her birthday. And if you get down on your hands and knees and put your face close, you can smell their subtle, sweet fragrance.

It's a bit like prayer--
head down on the forest floor
sniffing the mayflower.

Trailing Arbutus blooming on the banks of the tea-brown Ducktrap River

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