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Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

The Legend of Goldenrod

Goldenrod, long blamed for causing everyone’s hay fever, has an interesting legend associated with it. Supposedly, an old woman was walking in the woods when she came to a river. Realizing her balance wasn’t what it used to be, she decided to find a cane or branch to help her wade across the stream. She asked all of the trees surrounding the river to spare a branch, but none of them did. She finally found an ugly stick, which did not look like the bark of any of the surrounding trees, but which was strong and helped her get across the water.

The old woman, really the “fairy of the woods” in disguise, told the stick it could make a wish. The ugly stick wanted to be beautiful and to be loved by children. The fairy transformed it into beautiful, sunny goldenrod because she thought this stick was worth its weight in gold.

— From the 2009 Farmers’ Almanac.

1 comment

1 Carol Koniecki { 09.17.09 at 12:58 am }

The goldenrod is much maligned, but few native wildflowers can turn a head and draw a smile as solidago (goldenrod) dressed in my favorite color. Perhaps the wish really did come true 😉

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.