Archive for the ‘Trees’ Category

Happy Birthday to Me

18 October 2009

Big changes in my life since my last post.

The elderly couple whose properties I had been maintaining both died, and one of the properties was sold, leaving me with not much to feel productive about. I had promised myself that after they were gone so was I, and it seems to be working out that way. Forty years of Maine winters is an awful lot.


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A cold day in heck.


So here I am on my birthday, in a putatively warmer clime, hunting for a house. It’s kind of cool today, I don’t think the temperature broke 70; but it was in the 90s all last week and it’s supposed to warm back up to the upper 80s again later this week. Beats the 30s and snow they’re having today back in Maine.

I stumbled across a small state park this afternoon. Not much there, but it supplied a respite from people and buildings for a little while. Worth the three dollar entrance fee: finally learning how to identify the three different kinds of mangrove that grow around here. I also ran across these little guys:


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A bunch of tiny crabs at the water’s edge at Don Pedro Island State Park.


This one was crossing the path in front of me as I headed back to the car:


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“You’ll never get the secret recipe outta me!”


I paid for that shot. After crawling around on all fours, sticking my macro lens in the claw of this arthropod, I found I couldn’t straighten up. I had to make my way back to the car crabwise. My back is still in spasm. Still, it was worth it.

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The Difference of a Week

12 October 2008

Different weather. Different light. Peak foliage. A tripod.

I wasn’t satisfied with the stuff I got last week on Pleasant Mountain, so I tried it again yesterday. (I’m not satisfied with the stuff I got yesterday, either, but for different reasons.)

There was a dad-gummed hiking tour convened at the top when I got up there. Twenty or so self-congratulatory Sierra Club types who sounded like a flock of starlings. I didn’t realize how loud they were until they left and it got quiet. I don’t understand why anyone would do something like that in a group. I go for the solitude and silence. And the pictures, too, but mostly for that other stuff.

I did manage to keep the crowds out of the images; although I had to edit out a couple of apple cores, left behind by some pig, that I didn’t notice for several frames.

On the way up:


American Beech leaf in Autumn

American Beech (fagus grandifolia)


At the top:


Mount Washington, Kezar Pond from Pleasant Mountain

Looking northwest towards the White Mountains. Kezar (kee’ zer) Pond is at right, Mount Washington is just to the left of center at the top. If you embiggen and look closely, you can see both Tuckerman and Huntington Ravines.


Mount Washington and Kezar Pond from Pleasant Mountain

Another perspective


It took me three hours to get down, because I kept stopping to take pictures.


Moose Pond, Denmark, Maine

Looking southwest, over Moose Pond towards the town of Denmark


Moose Pond, Denmark, Maine

Southwest view, again


Moose Pond, Denmark, Maine

More of the same


Red Maple leaf, backlit by sun

Red maple (acer rubrum) leaf, backlit by the sun


Autumn maples

Some local color


If I’m gonna do any more fall foliage this year, I’ll have to hustle. It’ll all be gone by next weekend. Well, the bright maples and birches and stuff; after that comes the quiet umbers, siennas and ochers of the oaks and other late-fall foliage. But the stuff most people think of as “New England Autumn” will be past.

On the Run

10 October 2008

I hate to post just pictures (I have to explain them, doncha see), but I’m pressed for time right now. Here are a few from last Sunday’s hike up Pleasant Mountain in Denmark. The colors weren’t at peak, but still nice.


Pleasant Mountain, looking towards White Mountains

View from the summit looking northwest towards the White Mountains


View towards Mount Washington

That’s Kezar Pond at middle right, and Mount Washington at the upper left


Striped maple (acer pensylvanicum)

Striped Maple (acer pensylvanicum)


Red Maple (acer rubrum)

Oo! The colors! (acer rubrum)


Gotta run.

October in Maine

16 October 2007

…and you know what that means.

That’s right! Crappy pictures of fall foliage! Man, am I getting lazy. I only walked 50 feet out my back door to get these.

The East coast of the U.S. is infested with these: red maples (acer rubrum). Only the southern tip of Florida is free of ’em.


Red Maple in October

Red Maple in October


Same Maple, Different View

Same Maple, Different View


Day of the Triffids

13 August 2007

I just spent a week surrounded by cows ‘n corn and not much else. After the first 3 days, I more or less got over my internet withdrawals. The lack of people helped a lot. This is what it looked like first thing in the morning:


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Morning mountain mist


If you look closely, you can make out the house over the hill about a half mile away.

This is the view in the other direction (no houses there):


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Morning river mist


There’s a river in front of the mountain, just beyond those elms in the middle of the picture. While I was tramping around near the river the next day, this alien-looking plant was pointed out to me by my brother-in-law:


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Triffids


It was six feet tall and looked like something out of a John Wyndham novel. My book of wildflowers of the Northeast failed me, but after much googling (clustying, actually, since Google is evil) I found that this plant really is alien. According to the National Invasive Species Information Center the Common Teasel (Dipsacus fullonum L.) was accidentally introduced to the U.S. in the 1700s.

Seems a long time to hold a grudge, but there you have it. Apparently, these plants never bothered to wait in line to become legal immigrants, instead secreting themselves amongst legal seeds. I, for one, have no problem uprooting such invaders, as long as they can’t blind me.

I have more pix from the trip. I’ll put ’em up soon.

Aprill Shoures…

4 April 2007

…Maine style.

Back to the Falmouth Nature Preserve. Last time I took the Red Trail; this time I tried the Orange.

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It’s late and I’m tired, so I’ll skip the chatter and give you what you want.


Spring snow on hemlock:

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Hemlock and salt marsh in spring snowstorm:

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Old oak leaves, salt marsh, yadda yadda:

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Spring snow on last year’s beech leaves:

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The snow blower and shovel will be calling my name early tomorrow morning.

Whan that Aprill, with his shoures soote
The droghte of March hath perced to the roote…

But first the shoures have to melt.

I Got Nothin’

19 January 2007

Pines across the street.

By the time I got done scraping and shoveling after last night’s snow/ice event, I didn’t feel much like going back out into it to take pictures. So I pointed the camera across the street, just so I could say I took a picture of something today.

Hey, at least I don’t charge admission.