News From The UU Mile of the American River Parkway
Posted by David Dawson
Posted on November 1, 2016
A 10-22-16 pleasant walk on UU’s adopted mile of the American River Parkway resulted in some interesting findings. Of heartening note first was a posted notice of a project by PG&E, SMUD, the American River Parkway Foundation and Sacramento County Parks Dept. to restore areas recently burned in wildfires on the UU mile.
Next, it was fun to see the brilliant yellow of a wild sunflower thriving after an autumn rain. A consult with UU’s retired Professor Bill Becker resulted in the following information from him about this plant: “The flower is most likely Helianthus annuus, common sunflower, if the leaves are broad and deltoid shaped . A lower probability is Eriophyllum lanatum, wooly sunflower, if the leaves are narrow and the plant is covered with dense wooly hairs.”
Bill added further, “For sure it’s in the sunflower family, a favorite of mine because it’s a trickster. What appears to be one flower is actually a bouquet of several flowers, with each “petal” being a single petaled flower and the brown center section being made up of many small tubular flowers.” “The single petaled outer flowers are called ray flowers and the center ones are called disk flowers.” Finally, Bill commented, “The diversity of life is a wonderful thing.” “Sharing knowledge is a joyful pleasure and helps expand our awareness of the nature of the universe.” Many thanks to Bill Becker for sharing his knowledge with us!
And finally, over by the river, it was delightful to find a juvenile River Otter who seemed quite willing to give me several minutes to make a photograph before she/he slipped into the water.
I’ll look forward to being on the UU mile again, this next time with UU’s volunteer crew, out to clean up “our” part of the beautiful American River Parkway. We meet every second Saturday morning for this good purpose. Watch for details here if you’d like to join us!