A walk around the pond confirms it. Summer is fading fast, and autumn is in the air. Fall wildflowers are in bloom: goldenrod, bull thistle, field sunflower, nettles, jewel weed, Queen Anne's lace, and the even lacier water parsnip:
Always the first to turn, sassafras scatters shards of crimson to announce the change of seasons.
Below the surface, tadpoles are busy becoming frogs. (The salamanders have matured and abandoned the pond.) A snapping turtle surfaced, looked me over, decided I wasn't particularly interesting, and returned to the depths.
High above, the trees are putting the finishing touches on their seeds. My favorite is the hop hornbeam, with its beautiful cone shapes that shiver in the wind.
Entwined with brush at the back of the pond, red nightshade berries glow like a witch's poisoned apple.
Now here's the funny thing. Other than the frogs, I'm not supposed to like any of this stuff. Some are invasive, some are just weedy, and some are dangerous. But then, I wasn't supposed to like having groundhogs, deer, or coyotes either. Granted, some things are a tough sell. But as long as I'm around, all of them will be welcome.
(P.S. Except for the poison ivy. That's gotta go.)
Visit Michelle and her guests at Rambling Woods for weekly Nature Notes.
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