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The Daily Bucket is a place where we can post and exchange our observations about the natural happenings in our neighborhoods. Birds, bugs, blossoms and more - each notation is a record that we can refer to in the future as we try to understand the natural patterns that are unwinding around us.
Seattle. December 5, 2012.

There is a sheltered place just up from the northern tip of the Forest peninsula, a swale between shoulders of bedrock, damp all year. The remains of Grandmother Tree lie here. She fell almost a decade ago, a Big-leaf Maple too heavy with years of accumulated moss and fern to hold herself upright in the boggy duff. We were confused when we found her body, the top of her canopy smashed across a trail we thought we knew, her sap atomized into the air around us. We picked our way around her, searching for the easiest path - over moss, through fern, around struggling thickets of Osoberry and Red Currant.

That path is established now, ground down in some places to reveal granite boulders left by glaciers long before Grandmother Tree considered germinating. We note them as we walk, then splash through the boggy place where her roots failed, down to the Osoberry and Red Currant thicket that has thrived since her passing.

December 5, 2012. Seattle. The Forest. Last Red-currant leaves.
December 5, 2012. Seattle. The Forest. Last Red-currant leaves.
You need to know about Grandmother Tree to notice her now. She's sagged into one shoulder of the hillside, still nurturing the heavy cloak of moss and fern that brought her down. But there is more now. Dewberry sprawls over her, head to toe. Red Huckleberry bears fruit on her torso. Cedar and Doug Fir and Hemlock saplings throw their roots down along her flanks towards the ground.

And in the boggy place where her absence allows the light to flow year round, the Red Currants are already pushing out next year's incipient leaves.

December 5, 2012. Seattle. The Forest. Red-currant leaf bud.
December 5, 2012. Seattle. The Forest. Red-currant leaf buds.
December 5, 2012. In the Forest, next year's Red Currant buds are emerging.


Your turn. Everyone's welcome here. What's going on in your natural neighborhood, and where is that?

Busy day here. I'll check in around noon PST and again after dinner.

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