Bloodroot and Bargeboard

What a wonderful moment in the countryside.  The fresh green fields, new chartreuse leaves on trees, all looking manicured for a moment. We were invited to Cumberland County and partook of the visual and culinary richness of the season.

First we were excited to find some plants we rarely see in the wild.  Bloodroot has short lived blooms that only make the effort to open in bright sun.  They can cover large sections of damp forest floor.

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In the same habitat we found yellow Trout Lily with its spotted leaves and Dutchman’s Breeches which is in the Bleeding Heart family (looks like flying Dutchmen).

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Our real goal on this ramble was to collect some fiddleheads – something I would only suggest you attempt when accompanied by local informants. The fiddleheads were ultimately cooked twice and served with capers as part of a warm potato salad.

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The other wild component of the meal were a series of large lobsters (the season has recently opened in the Strait).  Our host produced a hatchet from a kitchen drawer and made like Lizzie Borden. (Last evening a chef told us he is uses a rock to crack large lobsters in a style I’m sure our ancestors would recognize).

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And let’s not forget rhubarb pie!  Truly the whole experience was the  ultimate celebration of seasonal and local and delicious.


And if nature and food were not enough we dropped into the Lowland Nursery  in Great Village and I did a short walk to look at the old school. Rich in Paladian windows:


And discovered yet again that when you get out of the car you see so much more, like the Greek key design on this window cap (not to mention the wavy bargeboard gingerbread.


Really there were amazing details where ever I looked .  Great Village is just the gateway to one of the most visually rich coastlines in the province. Make sure it is on your list.

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About the author

Stephen Archibald

It’s Stephen Archibald doing the noticing. I’m a huge fan of Nova Scotia’s material culture and cultural landscapes. Twitter (@Cove17 ) made me realize I could share what attracted my attention (perfect for my very short attention) and I’m gratified when folks enjoy my content. Pleased to meet you on the internet.