Late Bloomers

Late Bloomers . . .

December Dandelion: a single Taraxacum officinale blooms in Hudson River Park. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

December Dandelion: a single Taraxacum officinale blooms in Hudson River Park. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Hurricane Sandy did more than deprive the West Village of power. The late October storm also stirred up personal lives, including my own. First, there were the thirty block walks uptown to fetch a hot paper cup of coffee, followed by candlelit evenings huddled with my wife and two cats around a transistor radio. Later, there was the less dramatic resettling into normal routines, which for me included regular walks around the area to seek out and survey what flora might be growing wild in the West Village.

Today, set almost squarely in the middle of December, the city experienced daylight under a blue sky for the first time in more than a week. The good walking weather coincided with an abbreviated work day for me. I took the long path home, hiking about for over four hours with no firm plan except to pass through those spots where in the past I have found wildflowers: churchyards, construction sites, public housing green spaces, and Hudson River Park.

The results were surprising in their variety if not vigor. The fine lining to the overcast and wet weather is that this combination of environmental factors has pushed off an extended deep freeze, giving some of the more hardy perennials, both native and immigrant, some bonus time to bloom . . . late.

Along with the dandelion pictured above, I found:

Canada Thistle

Canada Thistle,Cirsium arvense. (photo taken 12 11 2012) (

Canada Thistle, Cirsium arvense. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Carolina Horsenettle

Carolina Horsenettle, Solanum carolinense. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Carolina Horsenettle, Solanum carolinense. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Common  Chickweed

Common Chickweed, Stellaria media. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Common Chickweed, Stellaria media. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Galinsoga

Galinsoga, Galinsoga parviflora. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Galinsoga, Galinsoga parviflora. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Groundsel

Groundsel, Senecio vulgaris. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Groundsel, Senecio vulgaris. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

White Snakeroot

White Snakeroot, Ageratina altissima. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

White Snakeroot, Ageratina altissima. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Yellow Woodsorrel

Yellow Woodsorrel, Oxalis stricta. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Yellow Woodsorrel, Oxalis stricta. (photo taken 12 11 2012)

Large, medium, or small; cool white, deep purple, or warm yellow: none of these wildflowers except cold-weather Common Chickweed displayed the rich green lushness of spring or high summer, but each one proved that, even in the urban northeast, there is more December color to be had than holiday evergreen, red, and white.

– rPs 12 11 2012

Advertisements

1 Comment »

  1. Kimberly Maxwell said

    Ah… Normalcy returns. Thanks.

    Sent from a roving device

RSS feed for comments on this post · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: