Ironweed

The first time I remember seeing ironweed was on a walk with my dad in the Adirondacks. We were walking near what was locally known as the Old Iron Bridge and since he liked to joke he mentioned something about the plant liking to eat iron. I was very young, and for years after whenever… Continue reading Ironweed

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Garden Night Life

I most often visit my garden by day, but night can be magical too. There are quite a few pollinators out and about, but what I enjoy most in summer are the sounds. For part of my academic research I recorded primate vocalizations, and for years after leaving academia I traveled the world recording nature… Continue reading Garden Night Life

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Jewelweed

As the name suggests, many people consider jewelweed to be a weed. I consider it a beautiful wildflower, prized by pollinators. Over the years I have encouraged them in my yard. Right now, I have two species in flower. The spotted jewelweed shown in this photo with a fly visitor is more common. The pale… Continue reading Jewelweed

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Oxblood Lily

When I bought my first house, in central North Carolina, my gardening instinct immediately kicked in. My dad and aunt nurtured my love of plants, and after more than a decade of dorm and apartment living, I was thrilled to have room for a garden. With six acres, my interest rapidly turned to obsession, and… Continue reading Oxblood Lily

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Fried Egg Flower

In my first garden in central North Carolina I grew both Franklinia alatamaha and Gordonia lasianthus. One winter a major ice storm coated the Gordonia leaves which persist through winter. The tree started to bend from the weight, and I was afraid branches might break off. In dedication bordering on obsession, I ran an extension… Continue reading Fried Egg Flower

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Box Turtle Feast

I have always been fascinated by animals. It took longer for my interest in plants to develop, though my dad and his sister were both very focused on flora. As a kid, they would convince me to join their nature walks with the promise we might see a turtle. Inevitably we only saw flowers, and… Continue reading Box Turtle Feast

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Joe Pye Weed

On summer hikes in the forests of upstate New York, my dad and I would frequently encounter a beautiful billowing pink cloud of blooms. He introduced me to Joe Pye Weed, pausing between each word, and pronouncing it in a deliberate way. It reminded me of how he introduced a friend, formally including the middle… Continue reading Joe Pye Weed

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Cranefly Orchid

Though most people think of orchids as denizens of tropical forests and grocery stores, they are quite common in my yard. The cranefly orchid first makes its presence known in autumn and winter with two toned leaves that are green above and purple below. Each plant has just one leaf, which persists through the coldest… Continue reading Cranefly Orchid

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Fuel For Monarchs

When I first moved here over a decade ago, there was a patch of swamp milkweed growing wild along the driveway, at the edge of the creek. As a park was developed upstream, plans included shifting the flow of the creek and since then this patch has died out. Fortunately, I still have fourleaf milkweed… Continue reading Fuel For Monarchs

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized

Ghost Flower

I have been fascinated by these ethereal flowers for a long time. On hikes in the Adirondacks, I would often find large clusters of them growing deep in the north woods. I’ve also seen them in nearby parks, but this year is the first time I’ve seen them in my yard. The cluster in my… Continue reading Ghost Flower

Featured post

Published
Categorized as Uncategorized