Some of us, when woods walking, need a purpose and a destination. Pressing
wildflowers can be fun, educational and full of purpose. In the quest to find
flowers, we observe many other things of nature: trees, bushes, lichen, moss,
rocks, birds, insects, signs of creatures, and sometimes, the creatures
Each summer month brings out new flowers to press, ending in the fall with
beautiful leaves. Most wildflowers press well with the exception of fat or juicy
flowers like lupines or flowers with large centers, like roses after the "hip"
has begun to grow. Don’t forget to press the leaves of the flowers as they add
a variety of color and shape to your future composition. Some ground cover
plants have striking colors and some of the tiniest flowers can provide the
perfect final detail. Do not press wet flowers, or pull up plants by the roots,
take small scissors. Do not pick fairy slippers. They are for the fairies.
Presses can easily be made from plywood, screws and wing nuts, but I prefer
using fat books as they are faster and easier to use on the trail. A large
rubber band or bungee can keep it closed while traveling in a backpack. When
back at home base or traveling, put your book under something heavy like a flat
rock, brick or stack of books. Sometimes when in the car, I sit on my book!
After at least two weeks of pressing, your flowers can be used for projects.
When on flowerless trails, l like to look for wild edible plants, rocks to
paint, birch paper for paper making, everlasting cotton and grasses, and alder
cones for Christmas! Use your imagination.
Flower, tree and plant identification information can be found at the Public
Library along with pressed flower ideas, and also at the Co-Operative Extension
Delta Junction Trails Association, with your input, is creating the Delta
Junction Community Trail Plan. Visit us on the web http://www.deltajunctiontrails.com/
or like us on Facebook Delta Junction Trails Association.