A full slate of wildflower walks for 2019

Please join me for a wildflower walk in 2019.  This year, I will be conducting several series of wildflower walks with each featuring a unique theme.  Beginning on March 1 at Fox Preserve for the winter identification of invasive species, this variety of wildflower walks will continue until autumn, concluding on September 25 at 100 Acre Wood to view the last of the season’s woodland wildflowers in bloom.  Please view the Events page for details about each scheduled walk.

Combined, the 20 different walks will occur at five different locations to address these themes:

  1. invasive species identification walks;
  2. ephemeral spring wildflowers; and
  3. woodland wildflowers.

Japanese Barberry

Invasive Species Identification Walks:  Invasive species are non-native species that can cause harm to the environment, the economy, or to human health.  Invasives com from all around the world and are one of the greatest threats to New York’s biodiversity.  Invasive species may cause or contribute to:

  • habitat degradation or loss;
  • loss of native fish, wildlife and tree species;
  • loss of recreational opportunities and income; or
  • crop damage and diseases in humans and livestock.

This series of two walks (one in March and one in July) – both conducted at Fox Preserve – will focus on how to identify invasive species of plants.

Garlic Mustard

Dwarf Ginseng

Ephemeral Spring Wildflower Walks:  Spring ephemeral wildflowers are native perennial woodland plants that sprout from the ground early each spring, quickly bloom and seed before the canopy trees overhead leaf out.  Once the forest floor is deep in shade, the leaves wither away leaving just the roots, rhizomes and bulbs underground.  It allows them to take advantage of the full sunlight levels reaching the forest floor during early spring.  A separate series of three walks each will occur every two weeks beginning in early April at two different locations:  Shenantaha Creek Park and Steinmetz Woods.

Yellow Trout Lily

Wake Robin (purple form)

Woodland Wildflower Walks:  Deciduous forests cover much of the eastern United States. Our forests typically have several vertical layers of vegetation, including a dense, upper canopy of mature trees; a subcanopy of smaller or immature trees; and an understory of shrubs and low-growing herbaceous plants. Many woodland wildflowers, called spring ephemerals, bloom before the trees have leafed out; other species, which can tolerate partial or complete shade, flower later.  A separate series of walks will occur at two different locations:  five walks (between April and August) will be conducted at Dwaas Kill Nature Preserve and seven walks (between March and September) will be conducted at 100 Acre Wood.

Indian Pipe

I hope you’ll join me.  Happy trails!


Invasive Species Awareness Week

In recognition of New York’s Invasive Species Awareness Week (July 8-14), I have prepared a compilation about how to identify (including color photographs and brief ID tips) a number of species of invasive plants at each of two local preserves:

  1. Fox Preserve (located in Town of Colonie) – view the compilation
  2. Vischer Ferry Nature and Historic Preserve (located in Town of Clifton Park) – view the compilation

Each compilation includes:

  • list of observed species (including information describing flowers, leaves, and other plant characteristics as well as when each blooms and where each can be found at that preserve)
  • color photographs and brief ID tips

The compilation for Vischer Ferry Nature and Historic Preserve also includes a list of links to other websites with information on how to control or eradicate each listed species.

Hope you find these compilations helpful.

Also, please join me this week for a walk to identify invasive species at (1) Vischer Ferry Nature and Historic Preserve (6pm on July 12) and (2) Fox Preserve (9am on July 13) – more info regarding each walk is available on my Events page.  I hope you’ll join me!

Happy trails!

Think Spring (and Sunshine)!

Would some full color photographs of wildflowers get you believing that spring is coming?  And that the sun may indeed shine once again?

How about adding a few wildflower walks on your calendar over the next few months?

If so, then please check out –

  • Early Spring Wildflowers
  • Wildflower Field Guides, especially my newest guides for:
    1. Ashford Glen Preserve (Town of Colonie),
    2. Bauer Environmental Park (Town of Colonie),
    3. Old Iron Spring Fitness Trail (Town of Ballston),
    4. Peter Desrochers Memorial Country Knolls Trails (Town of Clifton Park), and
    5. Zim Smith Trail (Towns of Ballston, Clifton Park, Halfmoon and Malta)
  • Wildflower Walks and other outdoor spring activities

Happy trails!

Spring is Near!

Despite last week’s significant snowstorm reminding us all that it was still winter, the vernal equinox will indeed occur early this week.

With longer days to come, the new season will begin heralding the emergence of a myriad of wildflowers and the unfurling of tree leaves throughout our area.

Common Shadbush – downy underside of emerging leaves

Emerging False Hellebore leaves

Consider these activities as part of your adventures this spring –

I have compiled five new wildflower field guides; you can view or download them here.  I hope they help you learn about wildflowers that can be viewed at some of our local nature preserves, parks and trails.

Lastly, I have scheduled several wildflower walks this year, including those listed above.  Please join me.

Happy trails!