Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A Spleenwort

Kodi and I are at Winterberry Farm for a few days. We spend a few days here every month or so to help my parents with weeding and mowing, cooking and cleaning, pulling invasives. At least once during each visit Kodi and I hike up to Rattlesnake Knob to take in our favorite view of Long Mountain.
My sister and nieces are visiting too so the five of us made the hike. It was mid-day, just after a lunch of   paninis with the garlic scape pesto that I made several weeks ago. My nieces rallied for the hike despite a warm day although we slowed a bit on the steep part. Then they charged forward reaching the knob before the adults and the dog.

The steepest part of the trail is lined with many interesting plants. I see something new every time. Today it was an ebony spleenwort (Asplenium platyneuron), a slender fern with a dark red stem (rachis).

Small clumps of bear corn (also known as cancer root), Conopholis americana, lined one side of nearly the entire steep section of the trail. Since this is the only place I see this unusual plant, I look forward to finding it here each time.
Lower down the trail a toad blended into the dried leaves covering the footpath and striped pipsissewa grew nearby, its white flowers set to open. I enjoy finding the common and the uncommon on these woodland walks.
I mentioned in an earlier post that my SLR camera is on the blink and I've been relying on my iPhone for photos. The latter have been less than satisfactory, until just the last few days, when I finally downloaded the 99 cent app called Camera+, and so far I'm impressed with the difference. Perhaps readers can be the judge by letting me know how the pictures in this post look, taken with Camera+. I was researching point and shoot cameras, one that I could fit in a shirt pocket, but the iPhone may suffice for awhile.

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