Began my routine wildflower inventory at Anchor Park at Hawkwood in the Town of Ballston today under mostly cloudy skies with no real hope of seeing sunshine. Sunshine is very helpful while conducting a wildflower inventory. In addition to obviously providing brighter light to simply see everything, sunshine also entices blooms to fully open. Low and behold, not long after I started, the sun began shining. Brightly. That helped.
Not only did I find a few mores species to add to the property’s total, such as –
…but I also noticed a couple of species on an additional trail where I had previously overlooked them. For example, I spied an Indian Cucumber Root (in its fruiting stage, similar to the image shown below) along the Stonewall Trail (blue markers), which is a species I had previously observed along only the Hemlock Trail (yellow markers).
Indian Cucumber Root fruit
Thus far, my inventory is summarized as follows:
- Total species for property = 212 (including 170 native species)
- Total species for Hawkwood Trail (white markers) = 151
- Total species for Hemlock Trail (yellow markers) = 114
- Total species for Stonewall Trail (blue markers) = 119
- Total species for Old Field Trail (orange markers) = 86
The species totals above are consistent with what any visitor to this property will visibly notice: far less variety of trees, shrubs and other plants along the Old Field Trail than anywhere else. With that being said, though, it is also important to note that a couple of native species found here are only located along that same Old Field Trail! One of those native species is –
If you haven’t already done so, I hope you’ll make a point of visiting this wonderful new park in the near future and make frequent return visits. With its diversity of habitats and scenic trails throughout this sprawling woodland, it is a great destination to go explore nature.
When you do so, I hope you’ll find something interesting to view, such as –
Pinesap – new blooms in foreground, stems with seed pods from last year in the background. Pinesap is one of our native parasitic plants; read more.