The Trillium Bandit

I could never tell this story while The Commander was alive because it would have absolutely mortified her. My mother was a strict rule-follower who I do not think *ever* told a lie in her life. Well there was that whole thing about how she and Grandroobly were gonna buy motorcycles and drive them to Yellow Knife but we’ll save that story for another entry some other time…

Once upon a time we were up in the Yooperland in the spring and we went on a day trip down to the Les Cheneaux area. The GG rode in Grandroobly’s vee-hickle and I drove The Commander in The Indefatigable, which was new then. We were all a lot newer then <grin>. I fergit which vee-hickle the kids rode in. Maybe there was one in each. That would’ve prevented sibling fights and I don’t remember any of those that day.

Anyway… On the way back to “Grandma’s Other House the Real House Where She Lives Some of the Days”, we took a little drive down Rockview Road to look for a good trillium plant because The Comm had a hankering to dig one up. And we found one right by the side of the road! The Commander watched warily for any kind of traffic on this deserted old gravel road as she got her bucket and trowel out of the back of The Indefatigable and dug up her treasure. My mother would have been extremely embarrassed if she had been caught by a Michigan DNR Conservation Officer while digging up a plant and taking it out of the woods. Her brother was the director of the MI DNR back when I was a kid. He died in 1972 and I wonder if she was feeling him looking over her shoulder. Actually, he probably wouldn’t have said a word, just like the time he stood on the moominbeach and watched Duke and Doc Read pull a fish trip (or whatever) out of the lake.

At any rate, The Commander dug up a trillium plant and took it back to her house and we all aided and abetted that little “criminal” operation. And we didn’t get caught. According to this website, it is illegal to *pick* trillium flowers. It doesn’t say anything about digging them up. Although it is really not a good idea to disturb plants and things in the woods. But this plant was right there on the shoulder of the road and I bet that snowplows sometimes plow through there and accidentally plow over trillium plants. Plus, someday somebody may decide to actually *pave* Rockview Road and we all know that means many plants will be destroyed. I don’t know if that trillium plant still lives but I think The Commander did a pretty good deed out there that day.

But I will never forget how she was looking around for anyone coming down the road who might CATCH HER RED-HANDED!!!

3 Responses to “The Trillium Bandit”

  1. Margaret Says:

    That is FUNNY. My mom, the staid wife and schoolteacher, craved a dogwood from the forest, so I remember several clandestine trips into the local woods to “find” one. 🙂

  2. pooh Says:

    Picking trillium flowers almost always kills the plant, as the biggest (only?) leaves are right below the flower and get picked with it. No leaves = no photosynthesis. So transplanting trillium, and showering it with TLC in its new site would be different than picking the flowers. Although, possibly it’s still illegal. 😉

  3. jane Says:

    I noticed a few trillium at my ‘new place’ and noted (aloud) that it was probably illegal.

    but more personally, a few years ago at the cabin I saw some little, pretty, pink flowers right out front – between the cabin and ‘the hole’ that I had never seen before. so of course I picked one and brought it in for Bubs to identify. Pipsissiwa (or something like that). Flower book retrieved to confirm. yes. also, illegal to pick. oh.