Thursday, June 4, 2009

Cottonwood Snow

It's early June, so 'tis the season when the cottonwood trees release their seeds in cottony tufts that waft around in the air, befuzz your dog's water dish, and in some areas accumulate like an early snowfall on the green grass. This scene is on 9th Street, between Water and Division, earlier today.

The cottonwood (Populus deltoides var. occidentalis) is a large tree of the poplar family that likes sun but also likes moist soil. A cluster of them out in the countryside often signifies a water source nearby.

You can clearly see the individual seeds in the layer of fine white fluff above and, closer-up, below. (Click on the photos for much more detail.)

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4 comments:

John T. said...

I've always liked cottonwoods even with all of the fluff they produce. I tend to picture them in my minds eye along a river in heavy, hazy summer air. How can something so huge come from such a small seed?

Jim H. said...

My sister was very poplar in high school because everybody thought she was a genus. But I knew her good grades were just occidental.

Nice pics (as usual).

Lyanda said...

It's snowing in Seattle too.
http://thetanglednest.com/2009/06/magical-cottonwood-snowfall/

Arati said...

amazing! you must check out the silk cotton tree on my website - i will be posting more pictures of this one in about a week's time..
but the cottonwood you've posted here seems a lot more prolific !