Monday, August 24, 2015

On The Trail

Today, let me take you on a walk on the Vestal Rail Trail, in Vestal, New York (near Binghamton) on a mild late summer day.

The wildflowers are out.
Goldenrod is one of the most distinctive wildflowers of late summer here in upstate New York.  It is a native wildflower, and a member of the aster family.  Contrary to common belief, it does not aggravate hay fever, as its pollen is generally not distributed by wind.

I am told its young shoots are edible.  I've not tried them.

In Germany, it is considered an invasive plant.
Joe Pye weed is finishing up.  This is also a native, and is sweetly scented like vanilla.  There are, in fact, some cultivated varieties, but you need a lot of space - even "dwarfs" grow to some eight feet (2.43m) tall.

Japanese knotweed is not native, and is invasive.  It is blooming almost everywhere, it seems.  I have to admit to a fondness for it, as invasive as it is.  We can blame Frederick Law Olmstead (one of the designers of New York City's Central Park) for introducing it to the United States in the 1800's.

As time permits, I'll publish more photos of my walk later this month.

Nature is all around us, even in urban areas.


  1. Looks like a pleasant walk. I grow some of that really tall Joe Pye Weed. Seems to love it here.

  2. I love getting out and taking photos of flowers in bloom. Looks like you found some good ones!

  3. Love them all, but the Japanese knot-weed is my favorite.


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