Are We Walking to Alaska

Are We Walking to Alaska
Are We Walking to Alaska - A True Story

Monday, April 1, 2013

Photo Heart Connection - March

This  is a photo/journaling exercise about a photo we've taken this month that speaks to our heart.




This is skunk cabbage - it grows in boggy, wet places and smells like - well it smells like skunks.

Growing up in Southeast Alaska, this was our first spring flower - and I loved the scent.  Not having smelled skunk and not having been trained to say - eeuwwww skunk - I didn't know I was supposed to hate it.  I watched the boggy places and waited - and waited - and knew for sure that spring had come when I'd catch that first scent wafting on the breeze.

The reason this photo speaks to my heart is that every spring Don will say "Let's go look for skunk cabbage" and we will drive out in the country,  sometimes to familiar places - and sometimes to new places, on a skunk cabbage hunt. Growing up in Wisconsin he doesn't have the same fond connection that I do - but he always brings it up in early spring, that we will soon be hunting for the skunk cabbage.

This year is a bumper crop - simply amazing - more than I've ever seen.  As we were driving up near these patches of skunk cabbage our eyes began to water because the scent was so strong - and still Don never complains - he drives right up so I can get close and get photos - he turns  the car around if I miss a patch and want photos.



It was amazing how many skunk cabbages there were.






15 comments:

Ann said...

Love! Love! Love the pics! A trip back to my childhood!!!
When I first left Alaska, a friend (also from Sitka) and I were driving thru the backroads from Auburn down to Puyallup and I suddenly smelled that smell. I said to her, "Skunk Cabbage! I didn't know it grew here." She busted out laughing, for she had been in Washington longer than I, and said, "No thats a SKUNK!"
Naturally, I responded quizzically, "Skunks smell like skunk cabbage?" Let's just say I have never lived that one down!

Karen Frost said...

I didn't know that Alaska doesn't have skunks?! Love your photos of the lovely skunk cabbage. We are getting whiffs of 'eau de skunk' too. A sure sign of spring! xx

Maria Ontiveros said...

What a beautiful photo with so much meaning about the changing of seasons and your unique background. I love it! Thanks for sharing,
Rinda

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

What pretty first flowers of spring. Your husband is so thoughtful to take you looking for the skunk cabbage. I don't think I could stand the smell.

Kay said...

We caught a glimpse of our first skunk cabbage last week on the way to Port Townsend - didn't slow down,though. It made me think of a place where I found (and photographed) it last year. I should return. . .!

Miriam said...

But it looks so pretty! I can't believe that something so pretty will smell so bad!! Thanks for sharing.

Michele Matucheski said...

I was just talking about skunk cabbage and what a Spring marvel it is! I think we have a different variety here in Wisconsin. At an antique mall, I once found a Skunk Cabbage salt and pepper shaker set. I bought it for someone who appreciated it!

Rosemary Reflectionsofmyworld said...

thank you for educating me today... I had never heard of this plant or seen pictures of it... glad for the heads up that is has a skunky smell. I admire you for being able to get close enough to take these wonderful pics.

Susan said...

We have skunk cabbage here in Maine, but I don't believe it has those lovely yellow blooms with it. I find it in the woods in low lying areas "wetlands" where standing water can pool after a hard rain or heavy snow melt.
Not so much a fan of the skunk smell-you can keep that. Once you have a dog that gets "hit", there is NO love there.

Crispy said...

I like the smell of skunk cabbage too, probably because it's not quite as strong as a skunk. I'm not surprised there is a bumper crop this year, you have had Soooooo much rain this winter.

Crispy

Kat Sloma said...

I love how sensory memory works - a smell that for others is awful is something that you love as a sign of spring! What a wonderful story. I didn't know that's what they were... and that explains the skunk smell last week when we were in No Calif - these were definitely blooming there! Thanks for sharing in the Photo-Heart Connection this month.

Elsie said...

I must take a wordbook to know what it whas, I don't recordnize this flower, we don't have it and the name make me smile, I think it doesn't smell very well but I like what I see, the color, the shape, it is for me very good looking and I can not imagine it is having an awful smell.

Thanks for learing me something new about the flora in your part of the world. I love it.

Carolyn Phillips said...

I've never heard of this either - but being in the UK where we don't have skunk either I'm not too surprised. What I love is the connection between the photo and your spring trips and a wonderful husband.

Sarah Huizenga said...

Our skunk cabbage isn't out yet, but what a great idea to get some pictures when it is.

seabluelens said...

I've never seen yellow skunk cabbage, only green. Yours is very pretty and you really do have a bumper crop. Actually, I've always kind of liked the smell of skunk, except when one lets loose right under my open bedroom window on a warm summer night....