The Hillock is UNDENIABLE in the Fall! As everything around it begins to fade or turn brown, the Mossy Hillock THRIVES and brings forth an array of every everGREEN moss possible. As the MossTender, I work ‘overtime’ to sweep away the crinkly crunchy leaves as they fall, for moss needs air, moisture, and light to thrive. A layer of leaves would keep it moist for awhile, but would smother the tiny sporophytes and gametophytes, making it hard for mosses to spread by dispersing spores. Also, since they get their nutrients from the air, they would be a little starved, not to mention no light to make chlorophyl!
I’m a little limited as to how I can clear off the leaves since Francklin, my 3-legged wonder dog, has an unfortunate history (my fault!) with rakes. When he was just a tiny 3-legged puppy, I would try to get something done while I was outside with him, so I raked paths in the woods. Francklin constantly wanted to play, and very early on decided the rake was his playmate! He would crouch like a kitty and POUNCE on the rake when it got close enough. Hence, the rake attacker game came to be! For me to accomplish any raking, I had to rake really fast and sort of narrate as I raked. I guess it was like playing with a 2 year old! Well, now, I’m paying the price. If I were to bring a rake with me to The Hillock, Francklin would WIN and go off with the rake. That’s what happens when puppies become big dogs! So I’m reduced to using my hands and a small stick! I’ll have to say, though, that it’s really the best way to be a MossTender. I’m much more connected to the earth, the moss is less disturbed, and sofar, no snakes or spiders have intervened in the process.
Another thing I notice about The Hillock is that it’s no longer just a hillock, with knolls, emerging magical dwellings forming a community, and beautiful pebblestone streets. It’s NOW a truly MOSSY Hillock! The small clumps of moss on the north side of trees have now spread and the WHOLE Hillock is mostly covered with moss! It’s so amazing! Moss is even growing between the pebbles on the pebblestone street! I don’t know if I could ever move away from this land because of this special place….hmmm…maybe we could someday way down the road sell the house and keep the studio and the hillock?
What I DO know is that NOW is the time to have Teas at the Hillock, bring children to the Hillock, invite school classrooms on field trips. I need and want to SHARE it! So soon I will send out fliers or invitations! It’s where stories grow for my books and images grow in my mind. It’s where I go to create, re create, meditate, and just BE. It’s a place for Aha’s and Amen’s and Aciu!