One of my favorite sights on a mid-summer hike is the bluish-green cane of the American raspberry (Rubus strigosus) plant. It usually means there is some older cane close by and probably berries on both, so long as the birds haven’t gotten to them. This shiny, wet raspberry plant looked fresh and clean on this morning’s walk. Alas, the berries are long gone.
Seeing without seeing. That was what occurred to me as I strode along the path and suddenly saw these beautiful orange rose hips. The berries had just started turning on our wild roses at home so I knew immediately what these were. And yet I had never noticed this rose bush before. It was just part of the greenery until I noticed it change. This appears to be a dog rose (Rosa canina).
The rose hips are edible and contain Vitamin C. They appear to have many valuable properties. I have often intended to harvest them on the roses in our front garden but tend to leave them for the animals.
Bagpipers will be familiar with the Rowan tree, a popular beginner piece, but I hadn’t actually seen one until we moved to Canada. The tree is popular in suburban front yards and the orange berries are another sign of the waning of summer.
How fair wert thou in simmer time, wi’ all thy clusters white.
Now rich and gay thy autumn dress, wi’ berries red and bright
On thy fair stem were mony names which now nae mair I see.
But there engraven on my heart, forgot they ne’er can be.
Oh rowan tree. – from “The Rowan Tree”
It is also known as the mountain ash. This one is the American mountain ash (Sorbus americana). The dried berries that remained over winter on our tree were a huge draw for the birds. It will be interesting to see if the trees along the river have any berries remaining when winter comes.