Thursday, November 12, 2009

An Incident on the Lake

Since discovering my patch of Bayberry, I've become quite fond of those little ones. I check in each week, monitoring their evergreen status and picking a few more berries. Upon Sunday's visit, the hillside just didn't look right. As a surreal cloudiness gave way, I realized that the whole area had undergone a heavy trimming. Plants were ripped into nothingness. At least one of my treasured Bayberries was gone, only a shredded stump remaining.

Since then, I keep flashing back to the scene. I try to rationalize the actions of those keeping the land clear. It is town property, and posted. The land is in use to support a water filtration plant. I used to clear roadsides years ago as part of my groundskeeper duties.

Ah well, I've calmed down some now after revisiting the scene. I noticed young growth sprouting from earlier cut stumps. Also, little startups surround the remaining bushes as the roots have the ability to push up new growth.

Here are the survivors.

I brought home a few cuttings, trimmed the stems nicely at an angle with a razor blade and dipped them in rooting gel, and then set them into rockwool cubes. While awaiting results, I'll be researching seed propagation.

Tomorrow's post will be a break from my planned green series. This afternoon a raptor posed so patiently as I tried to make do with my macro lens.


  1. Ooooh, I hate it when that happens!
    I get especially upset when the heavy mowing of the roadsides begins mid autumn (in preparation for snow removal/plowing, I assume). Like you, I have plants that I've watched grow and cycle through their various stages and actually feel a protective kinship with my little friends. To see them all mowed down hurts me and feels like senseless killing.
    I am so pleased that you were able to bring home a few bayberry cuttings- we do not have bayberry this far north and inland, but it is indeed a most attractive plant. As a child I was always intrigued with stories about how the colonists used the berries in their candle making.
    Hope your cuttings take hold!

  2. Weird problem here... I can't make comments with Firefox but can with Chrome.

    If they take hold, I will plant them in my postage-stamp sized yard. I'd like to collect a good many local species. I may be able to retire the lawn mower!

    I got to see bayberry candle dipping at Sturbridge Village ( some forty years ago. The handful of berries I have collected wouldn't even make a skinny birthday candle. ;-)