Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Meadow Sweet

Once again the level ground adjacent to the remains of the bedrock ridge holds a plant with beautiful flowers not seen anywhere else here.  They lured me in across terribly uneven ground hidden by chest high Goldenrod.  Each placement of a foot required testing for solid ground before any weight could be transferred.  Slow progress was made to the location of the flowering plant.  Pictures were my focus since the identification of the plant was unknown to me.

Once safely home identification was made.  Meadow Sweet is the name of this long naturalized native from Eurasia.  Just how a single plant found our land remains a mystery.  Now that the name of this plant is known, a return trip will of necessity be made to sample the aroma of the flowers.  There is no justification for failing to take a sniff on the first trip. The fragrance just might be grand.

We remain unsure of what about this ground near the house draws these turkeys here several times each day.  Three hens and their broods feed here during their leisurely stroll across this tended meadow.  As is the natural course for ground birds, their numbers have been in steady decline.  Thirteen chicks of various sizes remain on this visit.  These three hens hatched their eggs at different times as can be seen by the differing size if the offspring.

As also can be seen, our trees are filled with tent caterpillars in unusually high numbers this year.  Their large number is perhaps a result of the recent generous rainfalls.  Tree leaves are being consumed at a great rate but this is just one of many things that I can do nothing about.

Mother turkeys maintain keen vigilance of their surroundings resulting in pictures taken from a distance.  They knew that I was close by but have found us to be of no danger to her chicks.  I find it interesting that all are feeding in the taller grass yet to be cut.  We hope that the too cute reference linking birds to the title yet unmentioned has not gone unnoticed.

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