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Braiding Sweetgrass

 Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants was written by Robin Wall Kimmerer in 2013.

She is a scientist not a poet, but to me, she asks an essential poetic question when she wonders why it is -- and then makes a scientific study to find out -- that there is something so beautiful about a field of yellow and purple flowers.

In a field I pass on my walk:

Goldenrod and purple loosestrife.

Goldenrod and joe pie weed


  1. I did start reading that book and it now seems to have been misplaced!!

    1. Kimmerer also has a book about moss (!) that was highly recommended to me and is now on my list.

  2. I've always loved wildflowers. Yellow and purple are complementary colors on the color wheel and so pretty when contrasting next to each other.

  3. Yikes, my allergies acted up just looking at the Goldenrod.

    1. Goldenrod gets a bad rap since most of the prblematic pollen comes from ragweed -- or at least that is what I have read. I am sure it is quite possible to be allergic to goldenrod, but it is a super star as far as pollinators are concerned.

  4. I have heard of that book. My sister-in-law was given it, and with it she received a braid of sweet grass. it was very fragrant.
    I love the meadows of wild flower color. We used to have big areas of purple loosestrife. I even tried to buy it in nurseries, but then it was determined to be a noxious invasive weed and outlawed here. Alas, no more purple wetlands.

  5. I would guess that purple loosestrife started showing up in VT maybe twenty years ago. It is invasive and you can't buy it or plant it here. There have been aggressive attempts to eradicate it but it fights back and self seeds like crazy. It does give me a bittersweet sadness because I think it is so pretty to see.

  6. That sounds like a very good book to read. Beautiful flowers!

  7. We have similar issues with purple loosestrife here, it is so pretty but it chokes out the native plants. Such a shame.


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