collecting seed


Bigleaf Magnolia (M. macrophylla) Seed Cones
Collected Oct. 13th Photographed Oct. 16th 2017

In the past I’ve done Magnolia acuminata, M. tripetala, M. virginiana, and even M. soulangeana, but Magnolia macrophylla is a first for me (honestly save for M. acuminata, I’ve attempted to grow all of these listed species only once with varying success).

This was actually the only species Magnolia in Cuddy Gardens that still had seeds in their cones this year! It could very well be that some of them just weren’t gonna fruit this year or had otherwise long since dispersed their seeds. I feel like a doof to not have recognized this species w/o help but now that I’ve seen it I won’t be forgetting the distinct features again.

I stg that once I can make my own plant/seed themed shadowbox I will definitely will have to include Magnolia seed cones among the choice things in the display. They’re just so primeval/exotic in nature it’d be weird not to have some among the plant shadowbox decor.

Working with Plants

1. Start your own Herbal. There are some great books out there, but recording your own experiences/uses/collected lore for herbs is invaluable. Draw, press or take photos of the plants you include. 

2. Learn about plants by seeing them with your own eyes. Visit botanical gardens, nurseries, garden centres and parks to see the plants in situ and (hopefully) correctly labelled. The human brain has an amazing memory for plants, it is a survival skill to be able to identify them. When you walk through a park or garden, notice the plants and identify those you know to re-establish this memory.

3. Grow things. Be as ambitious as your space, money and time allow. Collect plants that are hard to find, appeal to you and suit your climate. Go beyond culinary herbs. Be aware of where you plant things in the garden, both directionally and symbolically. Plants you have grown are constantly receiving offerings of your time, energy and resources and are therefore more likely to be willing to assist you.

4. Plants will die. Even the most experienced gardener will lose plants. Accept it. Don’t just buy a few seedlings and then decide you lack a green thumb because they all died. Some herbs are annuals, that means they only live for a season, some plants are deciduous, some will simply not be suited to your climate or area and fail to thrive. Be patient and persistent and become a student of gardening as well has herbcraft.

5. Work in depth with a particular herb or tree to discover its secrets. Read everything you can about it, research folklore and planetary correspondences, consume it raw, dried, as a tea and a tincture. Prepare a spagyric essence from it. Burn it as incense. Infuse oil with it. Grow it, talk to it, dream about it. Watch how it changes through the seasons, collect its seeds, smell its flowers. Do this until you know it inside out, and then begin again with another. 

6. Substituting herbs is tricky business. No, you can not replace all flowers with lavender or all herbs with rosemary. That is lazy nonsense. Put some actual effort into getting the herbs you need for a spell, and if you genuinely can’t acquire them find something botanically related, energetically similar or at very least ruled by the same planet.

7. Treat herbs and trees as spirits, with respect and humility. Ask before your take, leave offerings, communicate, bond with them and you will be rewarded with gifts and wisdom and powerful ingredients for your spells.

8. Poisonous herbs and strong entheogens are for advanced practitioners. Don’t just start growing or using them because you want to be taken seriously. Some of these plants are tricksters, they can be very seductive. They are quite capable of controlling you. Be wary.

9. When harvesting for magical use, think not only what the plant is but where it is growing. A tree on a university campus will have different properties to the same kind found in a graveyard. A herb growing at the crossroads is different to one found by a stream. 

10. Expand your learning and awareness beyond trees and herbs. Learn the lore of mosses, lichens, fungi and seaweeds. Parasitic and carnivorous plants. Get to know the plants that grow locally, even if they are far removed from those found in your books.

11. Check your sources when it comes to lore. If a book tells you lavender is good for love spells, question it. Try to discover where the information came from, look up the older herbals, read books of plant folklore, investigate planetary and elemental correspondences based on the nature and virtues of the plant, not just what Cunningham says. 

12. Develop relationships not only with individual trees and herbs, but with particular species. Plants can be spirit guides in the way that animals can. There is an oak tree, and then there is Oak. They can teach, guide and protect. Having a handful of plant allies you know intimately and fashioning your tools from their wood, planting them around your house and visiting them in the wild will make your connection to those spirits all the stronger.



Instead of graduating, morty’s are now under going “new curriculum” which we can safely assume has been ordered by president evil morty.

They’re collecting mega seeds.


What could our new evil overlord possibly want with mega seeds?


Imagine pranking the company by having Gandalf enchant pumpkins to chase everyone around

Originally posted by spooktacularhalloween

Dwalin and Bifur: *attempting to cut them down with their axes*

Thorin: *turns around and stares down a pumpkin as it tries to sneak up on him* don’t you even fucking dare.

Fili and Ori: *running around trying to dodge the pumpkins*

Kili and Bilbo: *hiding under a table and whimpering*

Balin, Dori, and Nori: *well aware of what you’ve done and want no part of it*

Bombur: *crushes them between his hands and starts collecting the seeds to roast later*

Oin and Gloin: *hiding under shields in the corner of the room*

Bofur: *was actually in on it, he even helped you carve all of the pumpkins*

Primaris Space Marines. Aka Guilimarines

The Primaris Space Marines or I like to call the Guilimarines, are the newest addition to 8th edition. With new armor and equipment they, are meant t help rejoin the Great Rift that has slipt the Imperium in half. They are bigger, better, faster, and stronger, and can come in any color and Chapter - as long they are Ultramarines. All joking aside, here are the Good, the Bad, and the Meh of the Guilimarines.

The Good

  • The MK II Crawl-Pattern Bolt Rifle - So nice that Crawl named it after himself.
  • The Mark X Armor - Glad to see that the Mechaniucus had put some innovation into the Power Armor, by combines the most effective elements of ancestral Horus Heresey patterns of Marks with more recent developments in power armor technology. Though nothing has been released on how this is better.
    • Also what happened to Mark IX?
      • Salvia: It was Heretical!!
  • They look pretty cool.
  • Gulimarines - they were over commissioned by the Primarch Guilliman and were revealed as Ultramarines. Put them together and what do you get? Guilimarines. Or Cooler Marines, if you ask @crysdrawsthings. (Seriously, check out her stuff. It is cooler than the Cooler Marines.)

The Bad

  • Their Reason for Existing - They feel too much as a byproduct of the Gathering Storm material, and, just like the Storm, there was no build up for them. Crawl said he had been working on them for the last ten-thousand years, but we as the readers never got that. Maybe some novels in-between Gathering Storm books  
  • Too many unanswered questions - Why was Crawl working on them? Why does he have this technology and knowhow when so many previous Mechanicus attempts at improving the gene-seed resulted in the 21st Founding? Why did they have to make new Space Marines when they could’ve outfitted the already existing ones? Will, and how, they be resistant to Chaos? Can they use heavy weapons? How will the other Astartes take to them?
  • Lack of Chapter Options - Though GW has stated any Astartes Chapter can receive Pirmaris reinforcements (tell that to the Soul Drinkers), including non-Codex Astartes Chapters. However, upon their release, they only came out as… Ultramarines. It would be nice to see so special made armor for Astartes outside of the Ultramarines, Space Wolves (less said about the Wulfen the better), and to a lesser extent the Dark Angels. Time to give the other Legions a time to shine, without having to pay a rediculous amount for delivery. 
  • Makes the “regular” Astartes seem redundant - GW has also stated that Primaris Space Marines do not replace “regular” Space Marines. This is good if they didn’t also say you can also field an entire army of the Primaris, which does make the older guys feel redundant. From a fluff point of view, different Chapter, meaning ones outside the Ultramarines, are going to be hesitant around these “big, better, faster, stronger” marines. 
  • Chapters are meant to just accept them? - Um, no. Some might just straight up refuse them because they don’t have the same shared culture, traditions, or training as ones that are normally indoctrinated. The Wolves are a Legion with a strong pack mentality and refused to break those ties by creating Chapters. The Dark Angels are suspicious of everyone - though this might get the Lion out of bed. These Guilimarines do not come from the same home planets as these Chapters, they come from Mars.
  • Crawl and Guiliman insulted the Emperor and other Primarchs - When you think about it, Crawl has been collecting gene-seed, from all the Chapters and their Founding Legions, for ten-thousand years to make the Guilimarines. He and Guiliman have done the impossible of replicating and tweaking the gene-seed that only the Emperor of Mankind could do. Somewhere in the Warp, Fabius Bile is throwing in the towel. And if individuals like Dante hears that a Mechanicus jumpstart and his Primarch uncle has perverted the gene-seed of Sanguinius, then there will be hell to pay.
    • So does this mean that Crawl also has gene-seed from the Legions that fell to Chaos?
      • Raphael Carion: I hope not. We’re just transitioning to a Chapter, we don’t need any more at the time being.
  • Robbing the Sororitas… Again - Gender representation in the 40K fandom is a touchy subject. I am mixed. Though I understand that women cannot be full Space Marine because of fluff reasons, I still want the Adepta Sororitas to be their own thing and not a diet-Astartes clone, or forced to blend because the Adeptus Astartes was forced to do the same. I was hoping that the Pirmaris’ could have been that bridge and advancement for the Sisters of Battle, but alas it was simply not to be. 
    • Arphus Ziemras: Dammit!!

The Meh

  • The Mark X’s design - The armor’s design looks a bit too streamlined. Just with the Ultramarines colors make the Guilimarines look like roll-on decorated. I am hoping that GW artists make a few that have the cool designs and patterns on them in the future.

Time for Tags. @fuukonomiko, @crysdrawsthings, @cpujester, @mrsdorn, @ultramarineblues, @tw6464, @sisterofsilence, @neshtasplace, @melody-chii, and @a-40k-author for putting up with my insanity.


Made myself a quick biscuit this morning with some pendulus sedge from the garden. I was in a rush so didn’t grind the seeds as much as I would have liked, but the biscuit turned out delicious.

1. Collect the seeds.
2. Heat the seeds in a pan to help seperate the outer shell. Be careful not to burn them.
3. Seperate the seeds from the chaff by blowing on them while mixing. The lighter chaf will drift away and leave the heavier seed behind.
4. Add some water and smush into a biscuit shape.
5. Throw in a pan and toast both sides for a few minutes. Or you can bake for 15mins in an oven.


Seasons, Months and Festivals

Though most have forgotten the old elven names for the Gods they are still seen in the names of the Elven and Dwarven cycles and months of the year, though most remember them in the common tongue of Forged beings. Additionally there are a few key celebrations that occur over the year:

There are four seasons of Rúmerion, 12 months and each holding festivals specific to the gods, month and region of Rúmerion. The four seasons are as follows:

Winter - Wyrtir (December, January, February)
Spring - Izril (March, April, May)
Summer - Naryar (June, July, August)
Autumn - Durak (September, October, November)

January – Aydayar

The Festival of Celebration.

The FoC is a folk dance that goes on from sunset to sunrise on the first day of the year. There is a strong magical presence during this time and spells are more potent. There is also a first feast where communities band together in celebration. Especially Gnomes, Halflings, Dwarves, Humans and Dragonborn practice this aspect of the celebration. During the feast offerings to the Gods are made.

The Red Lotus Dance

similar to the Festival of Celebration but dance not feast focused. Celebrated by Elves, Drows and Tieflings

February – Ayluiner

The Lovers Dance

In celebration of the unification of Ayda and Ayluin joining together, offerings are made to them. Couples often marry and give gifts to each other during this period.

March - Nimuner

Father Wakes

The days start to lengthen and winter ends. Dances and Celebrations occur with offerings made to the gods as thanks for making it through the winter.

April - Zaornar

Celebration of the Sea – The Dolphin Dance

(celebrated by the Elves)

The Elves do the dolphin dance in thanks to the sea for its bounty. Feasts are held with aquatic foods and aquatics luxuries such as shells are traded, collected and highly sought after.

May - Merien

Celebration of the Tree – The Seed Ceremony - 

(celebrated by Gnomes and Halflings)

In the same fashion as the dolphin dance the Elves also celebrate nature during this month. The Gnomes and Halfling’s celebrate by collecting seeds from the trees that are deemed as the most pure or with the tastiest fruit and they replant their groves to match.

June - Jandaren

Celebration of the Hunt – The Boar Chase

(celebrated by Dwarves, Humans and Orcs)

Like the last two the elves celebrate the animals of Rúmerion. Hunts take place after highly prized beasts like Golden Stags. For the Dwarves, Humans and Orcs this celebration focuses on the hunt for the White Boars. The Dwarves take this a step further and look for possible War Boars to capture and train for their army.

July - Vanyer

The World Meeting & The Summers Dance 

(TWM rotates between each capital)
In honour of the Grand Council who met to stop Uther Duquette, a Grand Council meet to discuss trade, discovery, knowledge and disputes. The common folk celebrate the height of summer with a dance and a feast.

August - Ither

The Wolf Moon & Naryar’s Feast

With the end of summer the wolves come prowling, all races on Rúmerion have a grand feast in celebration of the harvest, bountiful or not.

September - Aerilayer

Father Sleeps – The Great Harvest

With the Equinox the night begins to last longer. Offerings are made by all to the Gods in order to appease them for a kind winter.

October - Ruyer

The Witches Dance – Dance of Golden Spells

(celebrated by Elves, Dwarves and Halflings)

Darkness has set in and magic becomes far stronger now. Golden comets often pass over the sky. Rumors of the Pumpkin King return for the mists on Rúmerion’s moors.

November - Sanon

The Warriors Dance

In celebration of Sana, veterans and war in general. Dances and Sacrifices to Sana and the gods occur. Orc warriors receive their clan tattoos now.

December - Virion

The Gnome Moon Celebration – The Snow Moon

(celebrated by Humans)At the end of the year gifts are given in thanks to family and friends. Gnome children receive their familiars now.


Dahlias were first called Acocotli or Cocoxochitl (meaning “Water Stem”) before being named after Swedish Botanist Andreas Dahl in the late 18th century, 200 years after their arrival in Spain. I’ve only seen records written in past tense of Aztec people using Acocotli “roots” for food and medicine - I’d love to learn of this tradition being carried on or revived. This is the national flower of Mexico. Aztecs grew them in their gardens and used them from the wild as well. There are 35 species in the genus, all native to the highlands in what is now Mexico, Guatemala, and northern South America. Spanish conquistadors, while conquering, suppressing, and murdering Aztec people and society, collected three of these species (Dahlia pinnata, D. rosea, and D. coccinea) and sent them to Spain. They attempted to work on the plants as food crops, but the Europeans weren’t especially interested until the plants hybridized and eventually made double flowers (the middle right and bottom right in this first photo are single flowers). I have to admit, I’ve been bitten by the dahlia bug and I too am breeding for new hybrid varieties, and learning as I go. This plant is unusual in that it has 64 chromosomes - 4 times that of most plants - so its genetic variability is incredible.
That said, I’m also honoring the original uses of the plant and looking for tasty tubers as I store the plants each winter. Better tasting varieties are similar to celery, water chestnuts, and perhaps ginger.
Grateful to Roughwood Seed Collection (@roughwoodseeds) for allowing me to grow their entire collection this year (including all of those shown in this fist photo). Grateful to Debbie Warden for allowing me to grow on her magical land again this year. Grateful to Snapdragon Flowers (@snapdragonflowersphilly) for being an amazing customer and supporter of my work. Also grateful to @wearewildflowers and @lunariagardens for ordering flowers for some weddings this year! We may have a week or two of blooms to go before the frost.
#acocotli #cocoxochitl #dahlia #dahlias #watercane #aztecfood #dahliabreeding #edibledahlias