Author Archive
Nature Walk/ Colors of change

Nature Walk/ Colors of change

An autumn as drab as this one may be a dismal disappointment, but an astute observer could have seen it coming. Throughout this growing season, deciduous trees suffered a slow, incremental agony. Demons, from drought to mold to mites, savaged and dulled their leaves. Strong fall colors were short-lived to virtually absent, especially the reds....
Nature Walk: A reclining lifestyle

Nature Walk: A reclining lifestyle

About a month ago a friend inquired about the identity of a common roadside plant. It swiftly grows up straight and tall, then collapses, branching and spreading outward over other plants, nearly smothering them. The friend added that it had short leaves arranged in circles around the vining stems, which had no tendrils or any...
Nature Walk: Grass, rush, sedge

Nature Walk: Grass, rush, sedge

Grass is simple for most people. It’s what cows and horses eat. It’s tall and slim in a field, short and in frequent need of mowing in a lawn. But it’s not really that simple. There are many species of grasses, some that don’t look much like grasses at all, and there are other plants...
Nature walk: Joe Pye’s butterfly bar

Nature walk: Joe Pye’s butterfly bar

Our little front pond has finally, if only partially, filled with water after this summer’s drought. The hot, dry weather also took its toll on plants in our yard. Ostrich ferns turned black and crispy-fried. Bee balm leaves and flowers wilted until I watered them overnight. After a few days, a few new flowers appeared,...
Of squirrels and crows

Of squirrels and crows

Just before winter our friend Vince replaced our decrepit dining room storm windows with a lovely bay window from another job. The people didn’t want it, so their toss was our gain. That window has opened a more panoramic vista on our side yard. In recent weeks the critters most prominent in the view have...