Earlier today I remembered that there were blackberries growing wild in the woods behind my house. Braving chiggers, snakes and ticks, I decided I’d trek down there to see if they were ready to be picked. I remembered as a kid I always picking them with my mom and Granny during July, so I thought there was a good chance they’d be ready. I was hoping to find enough to make some blackberry ice cream next week with LittleMissSunshine.
I knew it had been dry lately but I wasn’t prepared for what I found down by the creek. The creek itself was dry as a bone. The creek behind our home is usually so beautiful. With several gentle waterfalls, it trickles and gurgles it’s way through several properties, down into the larger Gunpowder creek. But today, it just sat there. Nothing moved. Nothing gurgled. The creek was dry as a bone, and instead of being a creek, resembled more of a wide hiking trail than anything that normally carried water. The bottom wasn’t even muddy–it was dry as well.
I made my way over to where I remembered seeing the blackberries just a few weeks ago, feeling the tall grasses crunch and break beneath my feet. They were dried out as well, and golden yellow instead of the normal lush green. When I finally found the berries, I was really disappointed: they were shriveled up and tiny. They were so dry and small that I had trouble locating them again. Some of them were still red, but of the black ones, they were bitter, and shriveled. The plants were brown and dried out. There was very little green left on them at all. Several were completely brown. Just three weeks ago the red berries were large and plump! Now they were barely the size of the nail on my pinky. It was so sad to see!
A few of summer’s best windflowers were still thriving though. I managed to take a couple of good photos of one my favorite summer wildflowers–Queen Anne’s Lace. Here’s a few photos I took along the way today.