Keeping a Nature Journal

What seasonal nature signs have you been noticing? Are you keeping tabs on anybody in particular? Do not worry about feeling like a busy-body; it is unlikely the birds or flowers will mind your curiosity. Do you remember last month when you first heard the raspy call of the male phoebe calling, “Fee-bee? Fee-burt!” Did

When is a bird a sign of Spring or not

Throughout the winter you may have your eye on some of the most well-known year-round resident Passeriformes – also known as perching birds and songbirds. These may include the Black-capped Chickadee, Northern Cardinal, White-breasted Nuthatch, and Blue Jay. You may also observe several varieties of woodpeckers including Downy, Hairy, Red-bellied, and Pileated. But there may

Gleaning and Foraging in Late Fall

If you didn’t feel it already, November marks summer’s end with the holiday Samhain (pronounced Sow-wen). This is the time of year when you bring in the last of your harvest – all that will sustain you through the dark months ahead – hopefully. What are the things you need to help you weather the

Crows: Problem-solvers and Joy-finders of the Avian World

I eagerly admit that the America Crow (Corcus brachyrhynchos) is one of my most favorite birds. Lumped into the order Passeriformes with other songbirds, they form the Corvid (Corvidae) family in which they share with Ravens, Fish Crows, and Blue Jays in the Commonwealth. Crows are not only clever, they have demonstrated intelligence. They use

Rosa Rugosa: Take Time to Smell and Eat the Roses

Ah, summer! As the days heat up delightful floral scents permeate the air. And some of the most delicious scents are coming from roses. My favorite is the beach rose (Rosa rugosa), a squat, deciduous shrub standing 3-6 feet tall, in the family Rosaceae, having dark green leaves, and flowers ranging in color from white

Forbidden Fruit

“Here, I pray all day long and with my whole body, for my limbs are a moving benediction to the Holy Wild.” ~ Danielle Dulsky, The Holy Wild It’s true. I bit into the forbidden fruit. I even dipped it in forbidden honey, fresh from the wild hive, outside the garden, but within tantalizing reach.

Culture does not exist without Nature

Humans are Part of Nature On a scientific level I think many of us humans have come to recognize that we are part of Nature; that we exist only because the circumstances meet the needs of oxygen-based lifeforms. But on so many other levels we consider Nature separate – either wilderness to protect from us

Monkshood Queen of Poisons

Queen of the Fall She is no monk, hiding her face from the sun; her hood brazenly pushed back daring you to come in closer. Though she is the bane of every living mammal she stands defiant in the face of death. Frost covers her cloak yet she breathes in the waning light. She presides