There is a shrub in northern High Park which has red stalks. It was originally called Redroot and the dry savanna here is perfect habitat.
Tea was a bit scarce before the American Revolution (after all, imported tea tariffs helped lead to the start of the war), so a tea-like drink was made from the leaves of this shrub. Leaves were gathered when the plant was in full boom and thoroughly dried in the shade and then used like oriental tea. It does not have caffeine. Eventually the plant name was changed to New Jersey Tea. It is abundant in the old field just to the east of the northern automobile entrance to High Park.
Other botany in this field:
When the heat like a mist veil floats,
And poppies flame in the rye,
And the silver note in the streamlet’s throat
Has softened almost to a sigh. It is July. – Susan Hartley Swett (1843-1907)
I so look forward to having a poem each day. Today’s was especially nice. Perhaps because it was easily relatable.
Hope you and your family are well.
Miles, today you are due much more thanks than usual 😉
1. finally ID’d plants new to me that I’ve puzzled over for weeks: Apocynum cannabinum, Indian hemp/hemp dogbane, growing shrub-like on the east walk down from Glen Everest.
2. saved me ID’ing dogbane beetles, aren’t they eye candy?
3. enjoyed the lovely poem of which you quoted the 3rd stanza, and in looking it up found Sir Charles GD Roberts’ “July”, stanzas of which you could treat us to later this month 😉
Long overdue “usual” thanks for captioning rather than titling your images, to yield my near-daily birds & botany quiz. Have recovered from the consternation of finding what I’ve called ironweed all my life is in fact viper’s bugloss :o)