My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Cattail Striptease

In late March in northern Wyoming, signs of spring are subtle. No soft pink cherry blossoms, cheery golden daffodils, or vibrant green leaf buds appear this soon to announce its arrival. Instead, one must go out on a warm, sunny day and hope to catch sight of a cattail doffing her winter woolies! 


I only had time to get this one photo before the long strand of cattail fluff detached itself and blew away across the marsh. So I had a little fun creating a few more versions of it...




24 comments:

  1. Gosh, what a hussy de-robing like that!
    Jane x

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  2. I agree, that cattail certainly has no shame!

    I haven't noticed the cattails doing that here yet, but it did get up to 40 degrees today, so that's a start. :)

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    Replies
    1. Maybe Wisconsin's cattails have more modesty! :-) But I'm glad to hear it's warming up over there at last - hope the balmy temps we're enjoying now will make their way to your neighborhood (and your bundled-up cattails!) :-)

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  3. I am pretty certain that we know cattails (or something very similar) as bull rushes. Cattails is a much prettier name - and I can see where it comes from as well.
    I really enjoyed your photo editing too.

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    Replies
    1. I've heard of bulrushes (as they're spelled here, which I didn't know!), but had to look them up to see if they're the same thing as cattails. Apparently not, yet they often grow in the same places and are often confused. Some web sites I found seemed to be using the names interchangeably. I also learned that there is more than one variety of cattail. So that's three things I learned thanks to your mention of bulrushes! :-)

      I'm glad you enjoyed the results of my photo editing! The "new and improved" PhotoBucket has dispensed with most of their very fun free editing goodies >:-( so I mostly used PicMonkey, which both Molly and Andrea had recommended, for these.

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  4. The third one is my fave of the bunch with it's warmth and textures. I bet we have these around here too, doing the same thing. Haven't look recently and they're always more enchanting caught in early morning or late day light. Hope spring is truly coming your way.

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    Replies
    1. It's my favorite as well, though I also really like how the last one came out - bit lurid, but that seems appropriate for a stripper. LOL

      I agree about the time of day when cattails look their most enchanting - I think it was the middle of the day when I took this one! These are at the edge of the big field behind our house and it should be easy to get some nice photos at either time of day. I'll have to remember to do that.

      We can still get some big snows in April and the threat of a freeze isn't past till about the first week of June, but the light is definitely at the end of the tunnel now - the sunshine and upper 50's/low 60's we're supposed to be enjoying tomorrow and Friday will certainly help! I'm eager to see how our landscaping fared over the winter - I hope everything survived.

      And I certainly hope spring comes to your neck of the woods at last!!!

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  5. You have featured one of my favorite plants of all time. They are excellent! Thank you.

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    Replies
    1. Really? Well how fun is that?! Glad I could oblige, and that you enjoyed them! :-)

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  6. Signs of Spring! I think we're a bit of a ways from that here except the maple trees are being tapped and sap is flowing so I guess that's a sign (though not an outwardly sign).

    I like your cattail photo (that's the name I know them by too) and although they are all very pretty, I'm a purist and I like the second one best. I do like a framed photo.

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    1. I'd say that those maple sugaring buckets hanging off the trees are a definite outward sign of early spring! Are you going to do any of that at Cranberry Lodge someday? :-)

      Thanks for telling me which photo was your favorite! It's a lot more subtle than the other two edited versions, but I did more than frame it - I also enhanced the colors, sharpened the textures, and blurred the edges. I think it came out pretty too! And the frame does set it off nicely.

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  7. The signs of spring are few and far between yet here in Bluff Country. You managed to capture a very interesting one in Wyoming. Interesting blog....:) Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I imagine they are, since I see that Bluff Country is in Minnesnowta! :-) We northern tier residents have to exhibit more patience and look much more carefully for the subtle signs of spring, don't we? I'm glad you like the one I found. :-) Thank you for your visit and your comment!

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  8. I love cattails! One year I picked a whole bunch along the side of the road in Iowa and flew them in a box to California with me to display in a vase. I coated each one in hairspray, so that they wouldn't begin disrobing as soon as they hit the West Coast. You know what LA does to people... ;)

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    Replies
    1. I had no idea there were such cattails fans out there! And you are clearly a serious devotee! :-) I loved your "Iowa to Cali cattail transfer" story, your clever method for ensuring they kept their clothes on, and your amusing remark about what LA does to people! :-) Did your cattails last very long?

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    2. Yes, surprisingly long! A couple of them started popping their seeds by getting jostled in the travel process. However, the rest of them lasted through two moves! After that, they started looking a little worse for wear, and I got rid of them. I have a special spot in my heart for cattails and pussy willow branches.

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    3. That's a very good run! Sturdy little buggers. I think here the problem would be that they'd get dusty, though I suppose you can just run them under the faucet.

      Oh, I LOVE pussy willow branches! Don't see those out here, though. Little fuzzy/fluffy plants, what's not to love? :-)

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  9. Any sign of Spring, no matter how subtle, is a welcome thing ;-). Nice pics!

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    1. Thanks, Spud! We're currently enjoying some not-so-subtle temps in the low 60s, with a chance of our first thunderstorm of the season this afternoon. I hope the trees don't get tricked into leafing out too soon, as there can still be some nasty winter weather in April that'll smack 'em good. My friend Robyn's birthday is Sunday, and she said she was looking at last year's calendar and had written that it was 80º on her birthday last year! Spring is full of surprises.

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  10. What an enchanting way to show life renewed! Lovely - Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Bea! I'm very glad you enjoyed these!

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SOME CURRENT & RECENT READING...

SOME CURRENT & RECENT READING...

  • INFERNO ~ Dan Brown
  • MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD & EVIL ~ John Berendt
  • MY NOTORIOUS LIFE: A NOVEL ~ Kate Manning
  • ONE SUMMER: AMERICA, 1927 ~ Bill Bryson
  • QUIET: THE POWER OF INTROVERTS IN A WORLD THAT CAN'T STOP TALKING ~ Susan Cain
  • THE BEAUTIFUL CIGAR GIRL ~ Daniel Stashower
  • THE DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY ~ Erik Larson
  • THE SHADOWS, KITH AND KIN ~ Joe R. Lansdale
  • THE TIPPING POINT ~ Malcolm Gladwell
There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"