the most wonderful time of the year {spring ephemerals}

Nothing helps to lift me up at the end of a stressful week like spending some time outdoors.

This time of the year in particular is one of my absolute favorites for geeking out with  plants — the ephemeral wildflowers only show up for a short time each year, and it thrills me to find them! As soon as the leaves branch out completely, the forest floor is too dark to support these beauties.

I was worried that I might miss them this year being about to have a baby any day, but I waddled my 39+ week pregnant body to the woods yesterday and was happy to see how much is already in bloom.

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Red trilliums…

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Trout lily after trout lily…

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Spring beauties…

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And the chicken pox queen finding spring beauties, too…She’s getting to be quite good at plant identification!

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Hepatica…

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Virginia bluebells…

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Squirrel corn…

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Cut-leaved toothwort and spring beauties…

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Blue cohosh…

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And of course ramps…

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What spring wildflowers are showing up where you live?

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For lovers of moss and waterfalls….

We had our joining ceremony (commonly referred to as a “marriage”) on June 21, the ripest, longest day of the year — the summer solstice.  It was absolutely perfect and very uniquely “us”.  I will soon be sharing ways we tried to keep the day “green”.

For now, I’ll share some photos containing much green in the form of moss and trees! Seriously, the Smoky mountains are a moss lover’s fantasy land.  And the waterfalls — AH! Breathtaking.  It was a wonderful way to get away for a few days without going too terribly far.

I invite you to relax and imagine the smells and sounds that accompany these photos…IMG_6928 Continue reading