Willow and Curb Stone

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In The Seattle Street-Smart Naturalist, David Williams describes a walk along the south fork of Thornton Creek from its headwaters near Northgate Mall through various pockets of greenery to its confluence with the north fork and then to their outlet into Lake Washington. Inspired, I followed that walk myself a few years back and have returned to do parts of it again. It’s far from a well-established or well-marked route. Sometimes the creek goes through peoples’ backyards, and you must walk nearby streets until finding the next fragment of public land through which it flows. One of my earlier blog posts shows the creek emerging from passing under Lake City Way.

Anyway, this willow grows on the edge of one of the bits of untended land along the creek. The parking lot, and the building it adjoins, look untended to me, too. The branches that intruded into the parking lot’s airspace have been pruned, but that probably doesn’t bother the tree much. I understand that one way willows sprout is from broken branches carried downstream in floods.

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