Notes from the Day

I didn’t get any photos today, but wanted to make note of a couple of things for future reference.

A mixed flock of warblers (and probably chickadees) moved through the yard this afternoon. I didn’t get a chance to look too closely, but I saw at least one (male) Wilson’s Warbler, another very yellow (either Yellow or Wilson’s) warbler, and Connor noted Orange-crowned and Townsend’s Warblers.

I did go for a walk around Totem Park this first half of the afternoon. One thing I noticed is just how large the purple sweet-cicely (Osmorhiza purpurea) has grown. Now that it’s starting to die back, with leaves yellowing and ends of the stems getting black, it stands out more against the rest of the vegetation. I usually pay it most attention in the spring when it is blooming. At that time it is relatively small, though looks fairly well developed. I think I had noticed at some level that it got a little bigger (taller, especially) after blooming, but I just had not really noticed how much bigger it ultimately gets.

After some rain showers this morning, the weather late this afternoon and into evening turned partly cloudy. It was nice to see some sun during this summer of rain, though I didn’t have time to go out and spend much time in it.

On today’s calls the topic was using “storyteller’s mind.” The idea is to bring to mind as much of the full sensory experience as possible when telling a story (even if you don’t explicitly speak of it). I first heard about this idea a few years ago, and over the intervening time have tried to do it a little bit, though not consistently (and with limited, though suggestive, success). Today one person shared something that was particularly interesting to me – that there was a time in telling a story that time seemed to fold over and the ‘past’ that was being spoken actually felt like it was happening in (maybe sort of overlain on) the present moment of the telling. I don’t know how often or easily that happens for folks, but I think it would be an interesting way to experience and/or practice telling a story.

2 thoughts on “Notes from the Day”

  1. Your note about the sweet-cicely made me curious about its roots since if it is continuing to grow larger after fruiting it seems likely it is putting energy back into its root system. It looks like another common name for many plants in that genus is sweet-root.

    I don’t remember reading about its roots as an edible/medicinal, but the websites I found say at least that others in the genus are (e.g. Looking at my copy of Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast again, they don’t mention anything about its edibility. I wonder if they decided not to include edibility information for most plants in the carrot family.

  2. Thanks for the notes – I think in the past I had wondered something about the name, but don’t know if I ever came to any conclusions (and if I did, I apparently don’t remember them!) Regarding native North American uses of plants, the Ethnobotany database is often a good place to check: One of the local species (Osmorhiza berteroi – which I don’t feel entirely confident that I’ve seen) has nearly two dozen entries (see with wide ranging uses, including simple edible, medicinal panacea, medicine for particular needs, love charm, and one group thought it was very poisonous. I’m curious, but not sure whether I’ll experiment with it myself at this point.

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