Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Looking at the Details



Sunlight flits across the water, framed by a curving branch. Arbutus trees were unknown to me until I moved to this area 12 years ago. They grow in a narrow band along rocky shorelines, usually within 8 kilometres of the ocean. I guess they like the sea air.  So do I.
 

Arbutus branches twist and turn every which way resulting in wild contortions. Native to the northwest, they adorn rocky bluffs and dry meadows. Not too much moisture, please. 

Throughout the year their bark peels in thin sheets of curling red revealing hard, smooth green wood that is a delight to stroke. The First Nations peoples used the bark and other parts of the tree for medicinal purposes, and hold the tree in high regard, for in their story of the Great Flood, the arbutus provided an anchor holding their canoe safe.
    

I love the glow of light through the thin peeling bark and the striking coloration of this tree. Leaves turn golden and dry throughout the summer as new ones emerge. Last week I stood alone and listened as a few leaves let go and rustled down, down through the forest canopy to fleck the ground with gold. I am reminded that summer is short and soon leaves of all sorts will fall.
 

Let's not think of autumn yet. Today is golden. I worked in the garden, pulling up weeds that grew while we were gone. The first tomatoes ripened. Zucchini went wild. Potato plants turned yellow and the garlic stalks brown. Dig. Pull. Prune. Pick. Enjoy.
 
Do you like our new ride? On Wallace Island an old pickup truck rusts in the meadow. We clambered in and Tim's sister snapped a few shots. Summer lingers on.

How is August in your corner?  

35 comments:

Donna said...

Haha, I like your portraits with the old truck! The landscape is looking a bit tired, but there are a few bright spots. The speedwell is still blooming nicely and our vinca flowers are lush and full.

Vee said...

That photo of you and Tim in the truck is wonderful! Hope you frame it! I know nothing of arbutus trees...they sound rather wonderful.

materfamilias said...

Gorgeous photos! Saanich poet Philip Kevin Paul has a poem "The Water Drinker," I think it's called, about arbutus in his collection . Do you know it?

Pamela Gordon said...

Hi Lorrie, I've enjoyed catching up on your recent posts while 'at sea'. Your photos are so beautiful. The arbutus tree is very interesting. I've heard of trailing arbutus and wonder if it's the same thing. What a great old truck! How fun that you hopped in for a photo. Blessings, Pam

Katherine said...

Beautiful captures, Lorrie. Each of your photos tell the loveliest of stories. I'm especially loving the colours and the texture of that arbutus tree - magical!

Fantastic photo of you and Tim in your "new" wheels. ;o)

Brenda @ Its A Beautiful Life said...

I don't know what it is right now about photos with rivers, riverbanks and overarching trees. I saw one the other day that I fell in love with, and now I'm smitten with yours!

Loved the photo of you two in the truck. An awesome shot.

Glad you are enjoying your days... and gathering your moments and memories.

Hugs,
Brenda

Mrs.Rabe said...

These trees are cool - I knew the name means bush, but didn't know they had trees too!

Love your's and Tim's photo!

Deanna

podso said...

Cute picture in the truck. It is therapeutic to slow down and pay attention to nature. You are getting your first tomato and we have our last~the garden is about finished.

Happy@Home said...

Great photo of you and Tim in the truck.
Interesting facts about the arbutus tree. The peeling bark part reminds me of our crepe myrtle trees.

Deborah Montgomery said...

Yes, great photo in the truck. I've heard of arbutus trees, but don't think I've seen one. they're beautiful.

SarahGeorge said...

Lovely picture in the truck :). The trees look so beautiful and so nice to know about them.

Carriekaye said...

In the Seattle area, these trees are called Madrona trees. I've heard the native people hear refer them with a word that translates as "Naked trees". No matter what you call them, they are striking.

Marigold Jam said...

Beautiful post and informative too. Love those trees. Where did you go in your new truck?!

Elizabeth said...

What professional photos, as ever. I have heard the Arbutus tree called the Strawberry tree, maybe because of the fruits?

cucki said...

Wow so beautiful xxx

Debbie said...

I'm completely crazy about the new ride. It's like one that my father had when I was a little girl. We didn't live on a farm or anything. It was just his old truck that he called a puddle jumper. Love that picture, and I think the photos in the whole post are so restful.

And yes... Let's NOT rush fall. I love fall, but let's keep it a wonderful thing to be anticipated instead of jumping the gun.

Cheryl said...

I absolutely love the picture in the old truck. Such fun!

Enjoy your lingering summer! (Believe it or not, I am too!)

Lin from A {tiny} Cottage In The Woods said...

Gorgeous photography & words. Love your ride ~ it looks just a few years older than ours (but ours is still running).
Have a lovely one!!!
xo,
Lin

Jen Vandervoort said...

The orange glow of the arbutus trees makes me homesick for the ocean...but in such a good way.

I love that shot of the two of you in the truck, it's darling.

Jen

l.wilks11 said...

Wow! Such beautiful photos. Love your composition and colour of the images. Thank you for commenting on my blog........xx

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

Bark is interesting and the sunlit piece is nice. Cute photo in the truck and I also think it would look nice framed.

ellen b. said...

Love that photo of the two of you in that old truck! You should frame it. That tree bark is really something...

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

That is the cutest photo of the two of you in that old truck! I would get that one printed and framed! It's CUTE! Hugs!

Deb~Paxton Valley Folk Art said...

Ah, Arbutus trees, love them! You are so lucky to have them near you, they are truly spectacular. Lovely photographs, your first photo is beautiful and love the pic of you in the old truck :O)

Maggie said...

Stunning shots of the arbutus trees such vivid colouring. The truck was a great find, did you get very far??

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

Great pic with the old truck.

Love the arbutus photos and information about it.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

Yes...I love your new ride! Great pic! And I love the arbutus trees that you have in abundance over there. So pretty!

Denise said...

I love the picture of you and your husband, Lorrie! You both look so cute in your hats! :)

I've never seen or heard of Arbutus trees before; they're so unusual! Wow! The curling bark is lovely, and the curvy, gnarled limbs are fascinating. It sounds like you're getting some goodies from your garden now. We have tomatoes, too, but they're not ripe enough to eat yet. Hopefully soon!

Have a lovely weekend. :)

Hugs,

Denise at Forest Manor

Sheila said...

Arbutus trees are so photogenic as you and Tim are in the back of the old truck. I have just scrolled through your boating photos and agree with you that boating does give you an entirely different perspective and enable you to see wonderful places you might never see. lovely photos as always!

Marilyn said...

August so far is good. I love this tree too. I was thinking it was called something else, so now I know. Oh would I love a pick up like that one. Great photo.

Jill said...

Great photo op in the truck! I'm not ready for this August business but here it is.

JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

Well August in or corner is just like August in your corner - in fact we are in your corner. :-) The photos of summer are fabulous and you just have to love that old truck - just think of the adventures it has taken, and now it is an internet celebrity.

Your Arbutus tree is called Madrone here in Washington (I'm sure you knew that already) - and in California a similar tree is called Manzanita, though it grows along the coasts and a bit farther inland too. I love all their peeling bark and shiny inner wood.

There are some fabulous Madrone up on Cap Sante in Anacortes - with a view of Mt. Baker beyond - it makes a chance to get some amazing photos - I took some when the Madrone was in bloom with Mt. Baker in the shots - amazing.

Decor To Adore said...

That picture of your beloved and you in that truck is just wonderful! You have to frame it.

I have to say it was a relief to read about your visit to Arles. We are truly kindred spirits. :)

aimee said...

Awesome photo of you and your hubby in the old truck--love it! I agree--beautiful bark!
Blessings,
Aimee

Storybook Woods said...

Really stunning photos. Enjoy this weather. Clarice