Late summer phenology.

Scientists have fixed names to Solidago nemoralis, S. speciosa, S. caesia, S. sciaphila, and a dozen other species, I’ve always called them goldenrods and watched them flare up across fields and fencerows, open woodlands and bluffs this time of year. If yellow petals of lanceleaf coreopsis bring in the season, pilous tufts of goldenrod bookend summer.

Too easy to make too big a deal of them, walking through abandoned fields the first cool morning in a while. Scouting wooded draws for sign of deer and turkey, attention split between squirrels and pawpaws above and mushrooms and woodcock at one’s feet. You can work yourself up with the things you think need attention.

Or you can make this day count.


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