Sunday, July 10, 2011

Why some people hate cottonwood

First little seeds float in the air, almost invisible. With the help of this spider's web, you get the general idea.  

They make summer snow.

Eventualy, the whole seed pod drops down to litter.

But I don't hate cottonwoods.  They're the biggest trees we have in the Anchorage area, they provide lots of green, noise muffling, air cleaning leaves.  Everything good comes with a cost.  Cars get us places fast, but endanger us - quickly through collisions and gradually  through pollution.  Chocolate makes our pants tighter.  The companionship of pets, requires care in exchange. 

And I believe there is great potential in cottonwood cotton, the right person just hasn't focused on how to make it profitable.  Here's an earlier post exploring what people have already  done with cottonwood cotton and catkins. 

It all depends if you see a problem or a potential. 


  1. Ever since I read that first post on cottonwood, I have looked at it as more than mere debris-- it really is lost potential! I knit and I am learning to spin, so even creating some cotton wood cotton yarn would be impressive-- people are always looking for wonderful gifts from Alaska, and if I could knit a pretty shawl (in multiples!) with it, my own mother would be sending them to her friends.

    I've also wondered about the oil from the seeds and if there is any potential with that, but since one of my daughters gets sick with cottonwood, I'll have to leave that idea to someone else!

  2. Another great thing about cottonwoods- their fantastic contorted shapes and beautifully textured bark. I love them in spite of their powerful ability to make me sneeze.


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