Monthly Archives: November 2014

Apocynum cannabinum – Dogbane

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After first snow

From Wikipedia

Apocynum cannabinum (Dogbane, Amy Root, Hemp Dogbane, Prairie Dogbane, Indian Hemp, Rheumatism Root, or Wild Cotton) is a perennial herbaceous plant that grows throughout much of North America – in the southern half of Canada and throughout the United States. It is a poisonous plant: Apocynum means “poisonous to dogs”. All parts of the plant are poisonous and can cause cardiac arrest if ingested. The cannabinum in the scientific name and the common names Hemp Dogbane and Indian Hemp refer to its similarity to Cannabis as a fiber plant (see Hemp), rather than as a source of a psychoactive drug.

Although dogbane is poisonous to livestock, it likely got its name from its resemblance to a European species of the same name. 

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In first snow

In the fall, when toxins drain to the roots, the plant can be harvested for fiber, which can be used to make strong string and cordage for use in bows, fire-bows, nets and tie-downs.

Atmosphere in the dying garden

Last photos, taken November 13, before a small snow and plunging temperatures. Winter arrives in another month, but the last few days have felt like February. I’ve been reading about atmosphere and mood, but I’m not sure it’s possible to put a name to what I feel in the garden. Perhaps it’s too personal, perhaps it lives in the body and can’t be described in words. Consider this–though the subject is literature, I think the experience of the garden is relevant. The text focuses on the German word Stimmung:

“I would like to propose that interpreters and historians of literature read with Stimmung in mind …

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