The Bad and the Ugly   Leave a comment

All of the regrowth in the river is not a good thing.  I already showed the deadly castor bean plant; it’s not alone.  This lovely flower belongs to the poisonous — and hallucogenic — Jimson weed.

jimsonweed

And this is tree tobacco, which is also highly toxic.  Its only virtue is that hummingbirds like its tubular yellow flowers.

treetobacco

I think — I’ve never seen it growing at this stage — this is tamarisk or salt cedar.  It’s not poisonous, and is rather pretty with soft grayish foliage and feathery pink flowers.  But it doesn’t belong here, and it spreads fast, crowding out native plants.

tamarisk

But far worse for fast growth and spreading, as well as growing anywhere anytime, is the ailanthus or tree-of-heaven.

ailanthus

Many years ago, there was a very famous book and later, a movie, called A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.  This is the tree that grew in Brooklyn — and everyplace else.  The problem is that as well as being remarkably tough, it’s remarkably ugly.  It doesn’t look bad now, but in its later stages it looks like a mop of leaves on a stick.

Last, there’s the most invasive species of all . . . shoppingcartus americanus.  One of these appears to be a Dollar General, but I don’t know the exact variety of the other one.

shoppingcarts

This species always seems to appear in nice places.  In this case, these specimens carried their burdens until they could go no farther; then their human conveyors abandoned them and waded to the island.

downriverwalker

By the way, the gentleman barely visible to the center right had nothing to do with the shopping carts just visible ahead of him.  Nor did his little dog, only visible as a black speck.  They were out enjoying the day, just like me.

This morning, by the way, farrier Jennifer trimmed Bella and Kody’s feet.  In the next few days, I hope to get some horses in here . . . at least short ones.

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Posted June 12, 2013 by stablewoman in Kern River, Nature

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