Monday, September 7, 2009

Dogwood Drupes

The Pacific Dogwood trees in my wildwood are red with seeds. These tight bright drupes are the transformed buttons of the spring flowers. Cornus nuttalii, Western Flowering Dogwood, is the provincial flower of British Columbia. The name dogwood comes possibly from the word dag or skewer, one of the specialized tools (which also include bows and arrows) carved from the hardwood. The wood's strength gave rise to the legend that it was the tree chosen for the Cross. Local First Nations used it also as a source of medicine and of dyes. Today we relish its beauty and the many birds it attracts. And it reminds me of a piece I wrote some years ago in honour of my mother Margaret (Bunty) who was born in Greenwood, December 26, 1925, and died in Vernon, August 8, 1993. I don't have a good picture of the real Bridal Falls (visible from #1 near the junction with #9) but many of the waters tumbling from the intruded granite plutons of the Skagit Ridge of the North Cascades are similar. Flood Falls is about 30 km east of Bridal Falls. Both easily evoke a bride's long veil and train.

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