Hands down, this is my favorite time of year. The ground is drying. Seed pods are crackling. I'm itching to roam the grounds and gather. I think those in the nursery trade can relate. I need to gather seed. I never know what I might need to grow and when. I'm fascinated by the colors and textures. I love it. Plain and simple - I love to collect seeds.
With the lupins, I have to pinch them close to the stalk, pull them away, and hold them until they reach the inside of the envelope or else they'll explode!
Some seeds, like the bee plant, are still maturing inside the little fruit.
The meadow barley is just coming in.
And then there are some things I just don't want to collect.
I had the privilege of spending time in the beautiful and powerful Islands of Hawai'i, mainly Maui. My personal belief system is to give back, especially to place. We don't need to get into it here, but it's important to give when we take. It maintains balance. So I volunteered with the Maui Coastal Land Trust.
This Land Trust protects significant environmental and cultural resources on the coasts of Maui. One Friday morning, my husband and I volunteered on a restoration project at Waihe'e dunes. Below is the very tropical looking greenhouse/nursery where they grow plants from seed and cuttings. Some coastal plants are so rare on Maui they must go to Molokai to gather propagules.
We rode in the back of a flatbed pick-up down a bumpy dirt road past acres of invasive plants and trees to the restoration site.
Then we worked. Which is why I have no pictures. I always forget to stop and take pictures. Our task was to hand pull invasives from a budding site of native coastal species. The site was very successful with the natives taking hold and the weeds small and manageable. Approximately 50 acres are on their way to being "restored." It was a familiar method of restoration. We have sites at Elkhorn Slough that I treat in almost the exact same way. What was most important for me was to experience the success and progress made by these hardworking staff and volunteers.
At the end of the day, we relaxed by watching the peacocks and chickens cluck around our feet. Thank you Maui Coastal Land Trust and volunteers for all the hard and important work you do.