April 23, 2014

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 58°F with occasional sprinkles at 2:00 PM on April 23, 2014.
  • The walk started in the Fern Glen.
  • New things were still blooming or coming up every day now.
  • Birds were quiet today.

The Trails

  • In the Howard Roeller Bed, wild ginger was blooming while the leaves were unfurling.
  • A little deeper in, an alien corydalis was blooming .
  • Farther uphill, false rue anemone was up and starting to bud.
  • At the top of the bed, hobblebush flower clusters were forming.
  • Its new leaves looked like some sort of creature from another planet.
  • In spite of the fence around this bed over the winter, deer still got at a young hemlock.
  • And this poor striped maple barely survived being used as a "deer rub" the year before only to get chewed up this winter.
  • Along the limestone cobble, rue anemone had come up and started blooming.
  • Everywhere maidenhair fern fiddleheads were rising from between the rocks.
  • Twinleaf was coming up along side with buds that should be opening in a couple days.
  • Already opening was large-flowered bellwort .
  • Along the edge of the pond was a large-flowered trillium being enjoyed by a practicioner of both yoga and photography.
  • All around the pond and back in the fens, spicebush blossoms were beginning to open.
  • Behind the kiosk, false hellebore was getting big.
  • There too was one of the many patches of trout lily or dogtooth violet that was doing so well this year.
  • At the edge, wood anemone was up, but with few if any buds yet.
  • Mayapple is so much fun at every stage.
  • Back by the deck, yellow lady's-slipper shoots were poking up; those in the cobble were still hiding.
  • Across the road, azalea showed surprisingly little deer browse damage.
  • The American hazelnut, on the other hand, had been clobbered.
  • Higher branches, out of the nibble zone, were sporting male catkins just beginning to open. I didn't see any female flowers.
  • Because of their absence in the 'Glen, I was surprised to find the carpet of Canada mayflower coming up in its usual spot on the Cary Pines Trail.
  • Another surprise was the invasive Japanese primrose in the flood plane of the Wappinger Creek Trail.
  • The wet soils they prefer allows one to extract the extensive root system intact.
  • I had noticed their bright green lettuce-like leaves while getting an angle on a cut-leaved toothwort.
  • And just past that was another favorite plant to hate: narrow-leaved bittercress.
  • This seems to prefer moist, (calcium) rich soils, but will grow most anywhere; its roots make for a satisfying pull.
  • Lesser celendine was mentioned as flowering last week. But its spread along both sides of the trail was very obvious this week.
  • It was nice to see numerous patches and individuals of bloodroot as the trail rose higher and dryer.
  • Just before the rise to the bluff, tufts of Pennsylvania sedge were gracing the sides of the trail.
  • We don't often think of grasses as flowering plants - even less so of sedges. One needs only to get down on their knees to find a tiny marvel. Getting up may be another matter.
  • Up top in the Old Pasture, a little cherry stood out of the crowd with the first Eastern tent caterpillar nest of the season.
  • On the Sedge Meadow Trail, violets were popping up.
  • Along side was the alien creeping Charlie or ground ivy. Fun to pull up in long strings from the leaf litter, not so much fun from turf...
  • The familiar garlic mustard already had buds. Both have history in culinary and medicinal arts.
  • In the back of the back Old Hayfield, burning bush was budding up.
  • A surprise was a cocoon, just like those I usually find in spicebush. I still don't know who's inside.
  • Behind the Carriage House, the magnolia finally had some fully open blossoms.
  • This is usually the end of the trail, but having started in the Fern Glen, there was still the Old Gravel Pit to traverse. The bottom was still holding water.
  • I hope the next report will not be talking about mosquitos...
Wild ginger
Rue anemone
Corydalis
Twinleaf
Large-flowered bellwort
Maidenhair fern fiddleheads
Yoga & photography
Spicebush
False hellebore
Trout lily
Mayapple
Wood anemone
Azalea buds
American hazelnut catkins
Deer browse on American hazelnut
False rue anemone
False rue anemone
New Hobblebush leaves
Deer browse on hemlock
Hobblebush flower buds
Deer rub and deer browse on striped maple
Striped maple
Canada mayflower
Japanese primrose
Japanese primrose
Cut-leaved toothwort
Narrow-leaved bittercress
Narrow-leaved bittercress
Lesser celendine
Lesser celandine
Bloodroot
Pennsylvania sedge
Eastern tent caterpillar on cherry
Eastern tent caterpillar on cherry
Violets
Creeping Charlie
Garlic mustard
Burningbush buds
Cocoon on Burningbush
Carriage house magnolia
Magnolia blossom
Bottom of the Old Gravel Pit
Yellow lady's-slipper shoots

Sightings

Birds
  • 1 Ring-necked Pheasant
  • 1 Downy Woodpecker
  • 4 Eastern Phoebe
  • 1 American Crow
  • 3 Black-capped Chickadee
  • 1 White-breasted Nuthatch
  • 1 Winter Wren
  • 1 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  • 3 Louisiana Waterthrush
  • 3 White-throated Sparrow
  • 2 Northern Cardinal
  • 1 Brown-headed Cowbird
  • 2 American Goldfinch
Plants
  • 1 Corydalis
  • 1 Ground ivy
  • 1 Large-flowered bellwort
  • 1 Pennsylvania sedge
  • 1 Rue-anemone
  • 1 Spicebush
  • 1 Violet
  • 1 Wild ginger

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