May 10, 2013

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 70°F, cloudy and calm at 5:00 PM on May 10, 2013.
  • A very late start - not great for butterflies, but birds were singing evening songs.
  • The low light too was not great for photography but...
  • The warm, humid air held the spring time scents of flowering plants, the woods, the earth.

The Trails

  • The lilacs at Gifford House parking lot had opened. The air carried their scent from the parking lot out over the Old Hayfield.
  • By now the grass on the paths was tall enough to cut.
  • In the back of the front Old Hayfield, an apple was in its glory.
  • All around the edge, honeysuckle bushes were budding up.
  • Along the high side of the Sedge Meadow Trail, the bizzare gall of cedar-apple rust - a fungus - was dangling from several branches.
  • The path was strewn with common strawberry and dwarf cinquefoil.
  • Way in the back Old Hayfield, shagbark hickory was in bloom.
  • So too as ironwood.
  • Pretty, but invasive burning bush would soon follow.
  • Flowering dogwood had started last week and was now in profusion.
  • Tucked in the dark side of the Sedge Meadow Trail was another apple with a different looking blossom.
  • Even this late in the day, fresh leaves were glowing green in the view from the bluff over the Wappinger Creek.
  • In the path through the flood plane, cut-leaved toothwort had been blooming.
  • So too were a mustard as well as hooked- and small-flowered crowfoot, obscure members of the buttercup family.
  • Near by, trout-lily was forming its fruit now.
  • On the Cary Pines Trail gaywings were about to bloom!
  • In the Fern Glen along the road, hobblebush was nearly done blooming. A week seems to be about all you get.
  • Dainty oak fern was up in a number of patches in the Glen.
  • Not so dainty Solomon's seal threatened to engulf the bench. Hummingbirds and deer both enjoy this plant.
  • Star-flowered Solomon's seal was in one little patch.
  • Ostrich fern was all over the place.
  • Maidenhair fern was leafing out in the limestone cobble.
  • Large-flowered trillium, brilliant white when new, was gracefully aging to pink.
  • The air was filled with a heavy sweet fragrance; the lilacs couldn't have followed me here... It was wild blue phlox.
  • In the fen, cinnamon fern fiddleheads were errupting.
  • The swamp shrubs did not do well this past winter, but a few rhodora were making a valiant effort.
  • Highbush blueberry seemed to be an exception.
  • Lo, the gaywings were in full bloom here! So strange a flower.
  • Equally strange, large yellow lady's-slipper was budding up. Our other patch has made no appearance whatsoever this year. Apparently from time to time, they simply don't come up for a year.
  • Red baneberry was flowering in many places.
  • Right along the road near the bridge was interrupted fern, so called because the fertile spore producing, leaflets are right in the middle of an otherwise regular, sterile frond.
  • On the way out of the Glen, choke cherry was now blooming along the trail.
  • The big patch of hay-scented fern took me by surprise as I rounded a bend on the way to the Old Gravel Pit. There is a dizzying quality to the sight of them.
  • A last surprise for the day was a fallen branch or trunk, really, of a large white pine. I imagined the noise traveled quite a distance.
Grass
Apple blossoms
Honeysuckle buds
Lilacs
Cedar rust fungus
Flower strewn path
Common strawberry
Dwarf cinquefoil
Shagbark hickory
Ironwood
Burning bush
Flowering dogwood
Flowering dogwood
Apple blossoms
Trees getting green
Cut-leaved toothwort
Hooked crowfoot
Hooked crowfoot
A mustard
Small-flowered crowfoot
Trout-lily fruit
Gaywings
Hobblebush
Oak fern
Soloman's-seal
Star-flowered Solomon's seal
Ostrich fern
Maidenhair fern
Large-flowered trillium
Wild blue phlox
Cinnamon fern fiddleheads
Rhodora
Highbush blueberry
Gaywings
Large yellow lady's-slipper
Red baneberry
Interrupted fern
Interrupted fern
Choke cherry
Hay-scented fern
Fallen white pine trunk

Sightings

Birds
  • 2 Mourning Dove
  • 1 Chimney Swift
  • 2 Eastern Phoebe
  • 1 Great Crested Flycatcher
  • 3 Blue Jay
  • 1 American Crow
  • 7 Black-capped Chickadee
  • 1 Brown Creeper
  • 2 House Wren
  • 2 Veery
  • 5 Wood Thrush
  • 7 American Robin
  • 2 Gray Catbird
  • 2 Blue-winged Warbler
  • 1 Prairie Warbler
  • 5 Ovenbird
  • 2 Louisiana Waterthrush
  • 6 Eastern Towhee
  • 2 Chipping Sparrow
  • 1 Field Sparrow
  • 1 Song Sparrow
  • 1 Northern Cardinal
  • 2 Red-winged Blackbird
  • 2 American Goldfinch
Butterflies
  • 1 Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
Fungus
  • Cedar-apple rust
Plants
  • 1 A Crowfoot
  • 1 A Mustard
  • 1 Common strawberry
  • 1 Gaywings
  • 1 High bush blueberry
  • 1 Jacob's ladder
  • 1 Lilac
  • 1 Red baneberry
  • 1 Rhodora
  • 1 Small-flowered crowfoot
  • 1 Starry false Soloman's-seal
  • 1 Wild blue phlox

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