Sunday, August 08, 2010

Some Call It Weed

The heat wave has passed, and the nice afternoon breeze brings a hint of autumn here in Mount Shasta. You'll notice some flowers have started to wilt, and water falls have shrunk, but it's also a perfect time of the year for hiking and other outdoor activities. Before the blooming season is over, be sure to check out the wild flowers and deep green foliage before they change colors.

Here are some common flowers you see everywhere on the side of the roads, people's backyards, hiking trails etc. They are beautiful, but many consider them as weeds since they are easily cultivated, and are also invasive.

Shasta Daisy

This is the famous daisy bred by the Master Botanist and Horticulturalist who is the father of many new breeds we commonly enjoy today (Idaho Potatoes, spineless cacti, plumcots etc). This particular breed took him 17 years to come to perfection after cross-breeding of 4 different species. One draw back is that it doesn't smell as nice as it looks, but it's still a popular landscaping plant that can grow in almost all climates.

Wild Raspberries and Blackberries

This thorny but delicious species can be seen anywhere, so be careful when walking into bushes and hedges. Wild berries can be a good natural fence to block traffic, but will not keep the deers out, since they love to pick on these fruits without getting hurt. Here in McCloud, deers are serious pests that graze on garden and vegetable beds.

Everlasting Peas

They are perennial peas that can be seen right off the road, and come in different shades of color from deep purple to white, but have no particular scent. They make a good ground cover if there is nothing else to grow. They have a long blooming period, and they spread easily by seeds or roots. They are very difficult to remove, and are not suitable garden plants because of its invasive nature, but they sure make a good picture with the summer Mountain (see picture on top of the page).

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