Archive | April, 2012

field and forest

25 Apr

Clintonia borealis are quite common in my area, the one in the photo is at a good stage of growth for eating. Clintonia is a nice cucumbery tasting nibble.

This is probably a very young striped maple or less likely a mountain maple and seemed photo worthy.

Japanese knotweed these shoots are also at a prime harvesting stage.

Live forever lettuce , Sedum telephium is ready for the salad bowl.

Turkey tail, Trametes versicolor a medicinal mushroom, this one is looking rather well for over wintering. ciao

knot shore & sea sky

24 Apr

Some folks will know what this is, these were covered with bumblebee queens a few weeks ago. At that time there was little around to provide nourishment to start the new generation, but these pussy willows really came through in the crunch.

Let the rain shine down, things couldn’t be without it. In the distant another obvious essential  of life.

The one is self sufficient no matter what.

Click on this photo, sea sky, the clouds above the sun line resemble an ocean’s shore line, especially if you look only at the top 2/3 of the photo.

This one helped out on earth day. ciao for now

Spring flowers, fruits and fungus

18 Apr

Flowers first—Trailing Arbutus (Epigaea repens)-smells like Avon’s calling

Here is a patch of Trailing Arbutus leaves, the flowers in this shady area won’t be in bloom for a few weeks.

A week ago I mentioned Teaberry  was the only northern fruit I knew that ripened in the spring, well I figured out tonight Partridgeberry (Mitchella repens) also overwinters as an immature fruit  and then ripens in the spring. Partridgeberry has some medicinal properties. So here is partridgeberry my (how did I not already know this) of the day.

And Teaberry (Gaultheria procumbens) wintergreen flavored leaves and berries.

These Red-belt polypore’s bright color stood out from a far distance, another pleasant evening with a few woodpeckers creating the background music in this new area for me of mid to young birch and poplar trees.

Red-belt polypore appears to have some impressive medicinal properties which actually have been utilized by man for a few thousand years and is once again gathering renewed attention.

Another nice Phellinus

ciao for now

Hello Crow

16 Apr

I must admit that over the years I’ve had numerous conversations with crows in fact our neighborhood crow came to me last summer very distraught over some deeply emotion event that  needed to be shared with someone, she spoke for a few moments then flew away feeling still upset. The crow who lives near us is a little shy normally and waits at a distant when we feed the others birds and I throw a few treats over the mallards and rock doves to make sure he gets at least some of the goodies.

The crow in the photos today is the first to ever speak to me in my own language.

We travelled on Sunday to Prince Edward Island to pick up a puppy and were waiting for the folks to deliver the little fella at the Cows ice-cream factory in North River just outside Charlottetown, which is the small city capital of PEI.

As we ate a snack this crow came around and when she raised her neck and pointed her head and beak towards the ground she would very clearly and quite loudly say hello.

So he or she entertained by repeating (hello) probably 50 times during our 10 to 15 minute meeting before he or she flew off with a full belly.

Tonight I googled to see if folks from the Charlottetown area were familiar with this crow and sure enough she is a bit of a celebrity over there, with a youtube video and a newspaper article from 2009 where in one neighborhood he is known as Russel the crow. If you would like to hear him speak just google (hello crow PEI) and the video should appear in the first few choices.

Here are a few other photos from the trip. Soon to be friends getting acquaint.

A little nap.

Borden PEI and a view of the Confederation Bridge. In 1997 this bridge was the longest in the world, now ranked in the top 50.

This old house. Cape Tormentine NB

They don’t make’m like they use too. For you wildcrafters there are some Japanese Knotweed stalks beside the house.

A last view of the Confederation Bridge from the New Brunswick side.

That is caw for now.

Return to cinder

12 Apr

Address unknown, I believe there was a garage here in the early 1960s before they closed this road due to the new trans Canada highway.

These blocks have become comfy protective homes for a few plant.

Moss grows fat on and in  non-rolling stones

This is slightly off subject though this tiny intruder appeared to inch worm his way into my car while I was enjoying the mossy cinders. You may need to click the photo to see him well.

I watched this little stowaway travel round & round for 15 minutes before I stopped the car at home, he was rather dazed and tired by the time I helped him off and into his new surroundings, but like the moss, plants and cinder blocks discovered in their journeys, home is where you find yourself, it happens true to nature.

No nonsense

11 Apr

good morning

I don’t know what to call it, moss, lichen, tree branch, fungus, decay, life, etc

I’m still standing, this area has lots of trees cycling naturally in the oneness.

Here is a Phellinus, I’ll need to search around for its first name though they are very common here, I’ve seen hundreds just this evening.

This old fungus could tell some stories.

The number of holes on this tree trunk is rather unusual in these woods. You may need to click on the photo to notice these.

I suppose it is time to turn in, good night.

Floodplain food and friends

10 Apr

Here are a few photos from a walk  along a river floodplain this weekend. These are vibrant areas even in the early northern spring and I really enjoy the energy flowing in these spots, always lots of activity, and small animal dens.

Ostrich fern fertile frond

baby Ostrich fern fiddleheads

Goldenrod insect galls

In the bottom central area is an Evening primrose stem with opened seed capsules and in the background plenty of wild cucumber vines.

young Red-belt polypore

Staghorn sumac

Not 100% sure what this plant is? It is pretty though. Not far from here I seen a Mallard swimming beside a pair of Canada geese, as I moved closer to the group it became obvious three is company four was a crowd as the geese got quite cranky at me, so I moved on without taking a picture.

With my camera I won’t get many wildlife photos, plants, trees and fungus are more my speed thought occasional a creature may approach me or as in this case a groundhog allowed me to come within 60 ft before he retreated down under. ciao for now

From the doorstep

8 Apr

I walked a few miles yesterday on a local river floodplain and really enjoyed seeing many of my favorite wild plants I like to gather in their early development and some still sleeping, I was going to show these today but I think I’ll show just one and focus more on today.

Insect home in last year’s goldenrod stem.

First open the door, (step 2) take a step on to the step, (step 3) look around, (4) take a few photos. —-The river was low, so it is good to see snow.

Have a great day

wild wild horseradish

5 Apr

Wild horseradish couldn’t drag me away, because no matter what you may be thinking you can only be in the here and now, so don’t worry about staying in the now, truth is you can never physically or spiritually escape it. The physical and spiritual are just concepts appearing in the one or none if you like.

Where was I besides always here and now, oh yes. I stopped in on the ridge tonight to gather a few wild horseradish roots to transplant into my indicator garden, the ridge has several hundred wild horseradish plants there which may have been introduced to that area in the 1600s as a medicinal plant for the early settlers arriving from France and slightly later England in this area known as Beaubassin. I’m not going to mention recipes or anything, just wanted to share with you these photos of this beautifully gnarly wild plant.

Corralled into the new pasture this horseradish looks a bit like colossus dinosaur. Have a great long weekend

True nature is always in season

4 Apr

I set out this evening to visit an area which I suspected may have the first spring flowers in my area, interestingly enough another plant I forgot about was flowering. I love it when true nature proves me of the path again, anyway I have a few things to show you tonight.

Coltsfoot –Tussilago farfara —- This is a very common plant in Atlantic Canada and has medicinal uses, usually for cough relief. These are the first local spring flowers other than Skunk cabbage flowers

Teaberry–Gaultheria procumbens— Now I  think most folks in the north would be surprised to learn that the first ripe berry of the year is the Teaberry which actually over winters and then continues to increase in size and ripen fully in May to June, at least this is so in my neck of the woods. Teaberry fruit and leaves taste of wintergreen and have medicinal properties, don’t try this plant if you are allergic to aspirin.

Japanese knotweed–Polygonum cuspidatum— These grow into large plants often over 8 ft high, here is a photo of young buds, the early growth up to 1 ft can be used similar to rhubarb in desserts or like asparagus as a vegetable.

Trailing Arbutus–Epigaea repens—- This is the one I suspected may be in bloom in dry sandy jack pine areas, nope maybe in 7 to 10 days by the look of this photo.

Wild blueberry–Vaccinium angustifolium—Here are the spring blueberry stems which in the photo resembles a wild blueberry plant forest.

Cattails–In this photo both Typha latifolia & Typha angustifolia are growing together you will need to click the photo once or twice to enlarge enough to notice the different head sizes.

Lastly, I’m going to enter a page at some point concerning interesting rocks I encounter, here are a few from tonight’s adventure. Also there are plenty of info on the net for uses of the above plants so check them out if they grow in your area, cheers for true nature.