Friday, 13 July 2012

On fire with fireweed

Fireweed is aglow through the Yukon and Alaska regions where we have been riding. It loves roadsides, areas that have been burned and swamps. The flowers are at their best in August when the last buds at the tip of the spike are out and the hillsides are awash with pink fire. That is a signal that the first snows are about 6 weeks away.
The fireweed plant has rhizomes and its seed pods have up to 80,000 seeds.
The burned spruce in the tundra have a carpet of flowers to warm their 'feet'.

After a fire something beautiful happens. In British Columbia the Morels come after the forest fires. The assayer's fire brings forth new gold.

This makes me think of heather in the Scottish highlands. The dusky pink and brown of the burned trees and the olive greens make a lovely palette for a tweed.

The tundra is full of life. The abundant plant life took me by surprise.
I imagine the entire tundra throug the northern hemisphere must be alive with plant growth. We haven't seen many animals. They must be enjoying the banquet. Bears eat the berries and caribou the lichens and mosses.

Pink far in to the distance.

At Wiseman, north of the Arctic Circle. Beech trees with a crowd of fireweed cheering them on.

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