Even when it's a mess

By Carol / September 1, 2009 /

September 1, another month past in my prairie restoration. The battle against crab grass is lost. In some areas, the seed heads are knee deep. It is quite the mess.

During August, I sought to photograph and identify each new plant I spotted. Most of them were weeds: woolly cupgrass, foxtail, lambsquarter. The partridge peas have been a ray of sunshine. They grow throughout the prairie; the one plant I actually planted in my new space that made it to bloom.

As I’ve said before, the prairie has caused me to slow down and look close. And this past month, I’ve looked both close and more widely around our property, identifying prairie plants that exist with no input from me whatsoever. A massive goldenrod dominates a patch of blackeyed susans, a smattering of Greater Lobelia came out of nowhere in an area east of the prairie that turned into a wetland with all the summer rains.

The wetland area is a tangled messy mass of grasses and weeds. But the Greater Lobelia stand out, a beautiful, delicate blue. I can’t help but think that’s the message of the prairie to me this month. Even though things look like a mess, when I have patience, maybe even when I just leave things alone, something beautiful will come through.

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