Wow, what a week. For two of my fellow interns, Monique and Alec, it was their last week here in Carson City. It seems pretty unreal that they’re both already gone, and I’m gonna miss ’em like crazy. Fortunately, I have the excitement and beauty of botany to ease me through this sad time! :'(
When I was about four years old, I was completely convinced that I was gonna grow up to be a farmer. I was young and innocent and looking forward to a lifetime of growing crops. I remember, as a youngster, opening up an ear of corn one day to find an enormous, grimy slug, slithering and writhing before my very eyes. Disgusted, I threw the corn as far as I could and ran back to the house screaming, and that was when my aspirations of becoming a farmer died.
Little did I know what the future would hold. If four-year-old Sam could see me now, I’m sure he’d be proud. As the weather warms here in Carson City, I have become increasingly involved with the Seeds of Success program. Last week we collected seeds from populations of Phacelia glandulifera and Amsinckia tessellata. We were blessed with heavy rains this growing season; harvest was bountiful. (Side note: Did you know that skin contact with Phacelia can cause dermatitis? Yeah, sure enough, it totally does!) Anyways, we collected over 10,000 seeds of each species, and made preparations to have them shipped north to Bend, Oregon, where they will be processed and distributed. Just like four-year-old farmer Sam planned it. Never give up on your dreams, kids.
Another species we will focus on collecting this year is Poa secunda. This is a great species to collect, because although it is native, it is found commonly throughout the western U.S., and can be planted just about anywhere. In the area surrounding Carson City, we often find it growing on north-facing slopes in communities with pinyons and junipers. As we have spent time scouting out locations where we will be able to collect seeds from Poa secunda, we also have stumbled across some other cool plants that we might be able to make collections from. I’ll keep ya updated and let you know how it goes!
Until next time,