A border is not a single line.
There are also such things as vague borders.
…the richness of these vague places is linked to the traditional view of space in Japan as something ‘in between’
Fujimoto Sou 2010
．．．このぼんやりとした場の豊かさは「あいだ」などの日本の伝統的な空間観につながっている。」藤本 壮介 2010
One of the reasons I became interested in the subject of “beautiful weeds” over 4 years ago, was coming back to Australia and living in an edge suburb. About 10 minutes walk from our house is where the houses meet the bush-land. The western edge of a not-so-big city.
This point where the burbs end has magnificent views to eucalypt-clad mountains but aside from that, the overlap is not so idyllic. It’s part paddock, part twisted gum trees, a bit of rusty fence, some native birds and lots of weeds. It’s a bit of a mish-mash.
Yes, I guess it’s being a little over-romantic to see the charm of the not-perfect landscape; to see beauty in the mixture of native and wild intruders. But what can I say, I like it.
But it’s not just me waxing lyrical about beautiful weeds. There can actually be added value, if you like, for wildlife in the complicated edge environments humans create. Where we split up the environment and stick our homes and gardens and roads in the middle of it all:
People…complicate landscapes, bringing resources together in useful combinations. We do this even through the vegetation structures we create. Natural vegetation can be monotonous, made up of vast grasslands without cover, or forests without clearings. Most macropods (kangaroos and wallabies) prefer a patchwork of openings to feed in and thickets to hide in…..most macropods now live along the edges connecting farms to forests.
The endangered bridled nail-tail wallaby is called an “edge specialist”….In South Australia’s mallee woodland, several birds prefer the edge between mallee and pasture. Magpies and ravens like to feed on bare ground and roost in trees. The red wattlebird is the most consistent edge-user in the area. In Victoria endangered barking owls are also edge specialists. Experts expecting to find them in large forest tracts found them on farms instead…”the species seems to prefer the edges of woodland where it adjoins farmland and where there are strips of large old trees along roads and tracks”. – New Nature by Tim Low.
That’s certainly not to say weeds benefit all wildlife or clearing land is helping out native creatures but isn’t in interesting how species can adapt?
I’m going to keep my eye out for more ‘richness in vague places…’