May 2-5- May’s days

Wow it’s been a few days since I’ve had the chance to sit down and write– sometimes work/family/music/random activities all gang up and push aside my most important priority– this journal!

Last time I sat down to write was soon after our successful morel-hunting trip to Montpelier.  The following day, Carly and I were still in a morel frenzy, and spent some time bashing around in the forest near the river, hoping that would be the most likely place on Twin Oaks land to find more.  We didn’t find morels, but did discover plenty of fawn and oyster mushrooms.  Another thing I discovered was that I had left my memory card in my computer, so wasn’t able to take any pictures.

Over the weekend, I haven’t had the chance to do any lengthy forays, but have documented a few of nature’s “happenings” here in the first week of May.

Like these little beauties, whatever they are, growing just outside of ZKImage

A close-up view of the same flower.  Image

In the fields and pastures, the buttercups have come out in great masses, patches of yellow all mixed in with the deep greens of springtime.Image

Another meadow flower that is starting to come into bloom this week is the purple vetch, with its bright little flowers.  Technically, it’s not an entirely “wild” flower, since we seed our fields with it to maintain soil fertility, but it certainly grows all over the place like a wildflower.Image

On a stump that I walk past at least several times a day, I discovered this enormous oyster mushroom, far too decayed and insect-ridden to eat.  How did I manage to overlook it while it was growing?!? Gotta pay more attention…Image

Yesterday afternoon (Sat 5/4), I took some photos in my back yard, documenting the state of the plantings there in the first week of May.  Some of what I saw:

the irises have all formed flower buds, and some of them have even started to open.Image

Normally, I’m less fond of this type of iris, as it looks really beautiful for a day or two when it first opens, then quickly deteriorates into a soggy misshapen mass.  For those first couple of days, though, it is really quite spectacular!Image

Our kiwi vine is starting to take off, looking closer you can see how the flower/fruit buds have begun to form– evidence that we will be enjoying lots of delicious fruit this fall!Image

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The mulberries have begun to form, although they still have a ways to go before they are ripe.Image

Ditto with the blueberries…and the cherries….and the gooseberries.Image

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And my personal favorite..the fig trees, which now that we’ve passed the last likely frost have been leafing out like crazy, catching up with all the other trees.Image

Yesterday afternoon, a day when I normally play ultimate frisbee in the afternoon, I went down to the frisbee field a little early, to poke around in the woods (and possibly find more hidden mushroom spots).  The north and west sides of the field are bounded by a stream, which is also the boundary of our property.  First, I explored upstream, pushing through dense woods thick with bramble and poison ivy– I didn’t get far before it just became too ridiculously overgrown and I had to turn back.Image

On the way back, I spotted these interesting soft puffy mushroomy pillowy things growing out of a dead log.  As I stooped down to photograph them, I noticed black feathers strewn around the ground, as though a bird had been killed right on the site.  I looked around, but didn’t see any carcass, just a lot of feathers.Image

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I also startled a fully-grown bunny rabbit, which hopped a dozen or so feet away from me, then stopped and stared long enough for me to get this shot before it dashed off into the bushes.Image

I returned to the field, and explored downstream a bit, passing this interesting spot where a bend in the creek undercuts four large trees– I imagine that at some point in the not too distant future, during a bit of high water, the whole bank will come crashing down; what a mess that’s going to make!Image

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