10 Things in my Yard
I was sick all last weekend and didn’t get to venture far from home. But, thanks to six years of limited yardwork, I have plenty of vegetation to see in my backyard.
Inspired by the No Child Left Inside Coalition video that said “young people could identify 1000 corporate logos but fewer than 10 plants or animals native to their backyards”, I went outside and took pictures of things in my yard. So here are 10 Things in my Yard:
State tree AND flower of Virginia, State tree of Missouri, State flower of North Carolina
Dogwood I learned at a pretty early age. One day, my siblings and I decided we would build a tree house. There were very few obtainable trees to our short statures. We selected the only one we could reach and nailed no more than three boards into the branches when we were reprimanded by our mother. Apparently, it is against the law to damage the state tree. And that was that. It was going to be a pretty sucky treehouse anyway.
| Gray Birch
I don’t have a good story about birch trees. But I will say every time the Direct TV goes out in the summer, this tree is one of my first scapegoats. It has grown so high, I keep waiting for it to block the satellite dish. I’m still waiting.
I was officially introduced to Mayapples last year by Jere Bidwell on our Cornelius Creek hike. Mayapples sport a single bloom which hides under their umbrella-like canopy, so you can’t see the flower from above, you have to look for it!
| Silver Maple
This tree never stuck out to me as extraordinary until Sean’s Dad came to visit the house. He is a fan of this tree and actually mentions it pretty regularly.
State Tree of New York, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
This is another tree Sean’s Dad taught me. When I first moved into my house I was told that this particular tree wouldn’t last because it was growing into itself. After all the trees I have seen survive under sketchy conditions, growing on rocks, merging back into themselves, eating fences and blazes and even combining with other trees, I decided this one is a big pansy if it can’t figure the matter out on its own. So far it is still going strong.
| Tulip Poplar
State tree of Tennesse, Indiana and Kentucky.
This is the favorite tree of my Great Uncle Chuck and my sister. Great Uncle Chuck likes it for practical reasons, “It grows fast and the wood is strong.” Carolyn likes it for a different purpose, “Because it’s easy to identify.”
Since two of my favorite people like this tree, the species will always have a place in my heart.
Sycamores I learned at a very early age as well. My grandmother used to point them out when we went to visit Mount Vernon. I also remember Sycamores from the Bible story of Zacchaeus. He was the short tax collector, who couldn’t see Jesus through the crowd. So he climbed a Sycamore tree to get a better view.
The more I see Sycamore trees, the more I wonder about that story. The branches are so far off the ground. How did short Zacchaeus ever get up there? 🙂
This is a new tree to me. I chose to highlight it in this list of ten because I like the pretty blooms. It seemed flashier than “Dandelion” or “Wild Strawberry”
Even though I learned this one at a pretty young age, I managed to have negative encounters with this plant well into adulthood. Most notably, I once got poison ivy on my face trying to rescue a goat from the wood pile.
Virginia Creeper is commonly mistaken for poison ivy. But it is waaaay cooler. It is featured in the state seal of Virginia! My relationship with Virginia Creeper began with Tony Airaghi. Since then I have become very fond of the plant, especially in the fall.
And there you go, 10 Things in my Yard, which is only about 1/3 of an acre. I certainly don’t want to put you on the spot, but I wouldn’t mind seeing 10 things from *your* yards.
Especially since I’m *cough* *cough* still sick and I can’t get to the AT. 🙂