Thursday, June 23, 2011

Plain Ole Grass

Usually when I’m out in the woods here in Timu, I notice the many wonderful kinds of trees. But one morning recently, my focus shifted serendipitously to the smaller, humbler plant life around the rock I was sitting on. All of a sudden, what was before ‘just grass’ at my feet, sprung out at me in all its timid diversity. In a matter of minutes, I had picked out nine different kinds of grass (and I know I missed some) on the basis of their different seed-heads.

The thin, forked one:

The spiny head one:
The long, fuzzy one:
The one that smelled like a kitchen spice:
The froofy one:
The oatsy one:
The Christmas-tree-looking one:
The other Christmas-tree-looking one:
The the one whose seeds stick to everything:

I'm afraid those are about the most scientific descriptions I can give for now...

As human beings, we have the ability to focus our attention on things around us to discover (and sometimes create) meanings and patterns. But we’re made in such a way that we can only focus on so much detail at one time. Too often we go through life focused only on this thing or that thing and miss literally a whole universe. (Did you know that it is now thought that we have identified only 2% of the earth’s estimated 100,000,000 biological species? I wonder if all these kinds of grass are already known?)

What details are you missing (out on)?


The Reeds said...

My favorite is the "froofy" one! Can't wait for Jacob to see this. He will LOVE seeing the grass!

Rich & Sally Hoffman said...

That is so "kua-l"! And the great thing is, the Ik have their own names for EVERY one of those and a thousand others, including ALL those Heine didn't record the scientific names for:).

ChadandRachel said...

points for using "serendipitous" and "froofy" in the same entry.

Notinthewild said...

These images are stunning for being so attentive to something so common. The top one with the whole parade against the cement is remarkably beautiful--looks like a work of art. Frame it!

Martha Schmidt said...

Set out on my bike in the fields around my house...I noticed many of the same kinds of grass. Thanks for a reminder to take a closer look!

Anonymous said...

Great blog and photos! - Robin