Sunday 26 October 2014. The Last of the Last Bottle Gentians

It was 46 degrees F at 7:30 this morning, the sky clear.

Wanted to get out and ride among fall leaves to the north but knew this was probably my last chance this year to see the Meadowbrook Park bottle gentians.

Remembered that It probably still was not possible to turn on to Windsor Road from Race Street, so took Vine. Had still not fully transitioned my awareness from yoga to cycling mode, but was able to behold and photograph a large, low-branching sugar maple I recalled from a previous trip.

At the Vine Street entrance to Meadowbrook

made a purposeful clockwise foray to the site of the Marker statue. Did stop a couple times on the way to record the dried or drying prairie vegetation, which made me think of the word “attenuated.”

A fair amount of white-petaled frost aster still bloomed, but the white of the goldenrods was about the seed stage.

Near the statue,

did not see any gentians at first; was ready to concede that they were done for this year. But then right in front and near the middle were two small clusters of flowers, somewhat faded but still blue.

Was glad to have this last visit; felt a little sad but able to go on toward the somber cold season with the image of this years’ gentians in memory.

Wondered if the garden spider I’d seen before in its web near some gentian plants would still be there, though figured without flowers there wouldn’t be much spider prey and probably no spider. Was surprised, though, to find its empty web.

Did not make the rest of the loop around the prairie, alas, but did head on the sidewalk along Windsor Road (the repairs on which appeared to be about half-way done) toward Philo Road.

Checked the place on the long fence to the south of the sidewalk where I’d seen thick vines of poison ivy–in previous years they showed some great fall colors. But it looked like someone was on to its luxuriant growth and had applied herbicide.

Later in the day, a lot of leaves would let go of their attachment to the tree branches from which they grew; the blue sky would be full of yellow leaves. How fortunate to be a witness!


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