Much of the land in central Jersey has been highly traumatized, first by agriculture, then by suburbanization and invasive species. During the agricultural era, plowing erased the land's memory of what it once had been, not altogether unlike the erasure of Native American culture through forced assimilation. On this traumatized land now live many people who have lost connection to the land around them. Land that long ago lost its memory--its seedbank of native species that once flourished upon it--has now lost the touch of a human hand.
Heightening the sense of disconnection, this development, with houses dropped on the land as if they were spaceships from another planet, also lacks any clear physical connection to other developments around it. West Windsor at some point becomes East Windsor, their names suggesting they are west or east of something, and yet Windsor itself--once called Centerville because it is located at the center of the state--has barely 300 residents.
It is astonishing to witness the hegemony that mugwort can achieve. Monocultural stands of mugwort stretch for miles along roadsides in the Plainsboro area. This can be called an invasive species default, in which aggressive nonnative species fill the void left by past agricultural trauma followed by neglect.