Sunday, February 17, 2019

A great time of year to walk in the woods

Black Walnut leaves are a distinctive spring-green. The clump of trees in the lower left corner of the image are black walnut.
Technically, I am trespassing since I don't have explicit permission to be on the property.

I wear an orange hat and do not carry a firearm. I am not hunting, I am walking. That defuses tension. I am not going to shoot holes in houses, cars or livestock.

The ground is frozen so I can go places that are normally inaccessible. There are no mosquitoes and my heavy coat easily sheds thorns.

My original reason for walking was to look for superior specimens of cottonwood. I was not successful.

Black Walnut
What I found was an eight acre woods where 40% of the trees are mature Black Walnuts.

The tall weeds are Giant Ragweed, a common plant in low, peaty places. Some anthropologists claim Amer-Indians used giant ragweed as a grain before maize migrated from Mexico.

Poor timber form. Probably makes lots of nuts, though.
Root pattern common in marshy areas.

A black walnut blow-down.

A couple of images of the "soil" the blow-down was growing in. Yes, Virginia, the dirt burns if you dry it out and put a match to it. It is pre-coal.

Another image of the "soil".

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