Tonight I made another attempt to photograph the Lobelia. It didn’t go so well, but this one is good enough:

Indian Tobacco (Lobelia inflata)

Indian Tobacco (Lobelia inflata)


Yesterday I wrote that I thought it was Lobelia spicata. Well, I’ve changed my mind. Now I’m thinking pretty strongly that it’s Lobelia inflata, aka Indian Tobacco. I went through all my photos that I had tagged as “Unknown species” and found the ones I had taken last year of this plant. Then I retagged them as Lobelia inflata.

All the plants in the genus are poisonous, which would explain a couple of the names I found for the genus as a whole: Pukeweed, and Vomitwort. Is it somewhat emetic? Yes it is!

While I was taking pictures Beth came up to me with some training wheels I had bought at the Pathfinder yardsale back on Memorial Day and asked if I would put them on her bike. I had put some old training wheels on there last year, but they were missing a part – the part that prevents them from folding forward or backward leading to certain crashitude. Which is why I bought another set when I came across them. I put the camera away and got the tools. Then I gave her bike riding lesson number one: how to stop. Here she is putting it into practice:

Beth learning to ride a bike

Beth learning to ride a bike

When I taught Jonathan (my oldest) how to ride a bike, I kinda learned how to teach a kid to ride a bike. A parent’s natural inclination is to make the bike go slow so no one gets hurt, and that’s what I did with him. But that’s all wrong! It’s REALLY hard to balance a bike when it’s going slow, and it’s dead easy to balance when it’s going fast. Once I figured that out, I took him to a grassy hill, and sent him down. I applied that technique on David right away, and he picked it up pretty quickly. We’ll see how it goes with Beth. The problem with grassy hills is that they often lead to trees, and that’s true of our place here. And that’s why lesson one is “how to stop.”

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