Cedar Forest Road wildflowers

When you miss the caravan for the cedar glade field trip and try to find it on your own and no one at headquarters knows where the van was headed and you drive and drive where the brochure said it might be, but eventually give up and turn around.
And then,
when you start to notice what’s on the side of the road: Continue reading “Cedar Forest Road wildflowers”

Red-shouldered bugs and a fresh assassin

red shouldered bugs

I knew they weren’t box-elder bugs, but what? Hundreds and hundreds were mating and scurrying about on a (stupid) bush honeysuckle covered with (stupid) English ivy. So I type “red shoulder bug,” into BugGuide and guess what they are?
“Red-shouldered Bugs.” Continue reading “Red-shouldered bugs and a fresh assassin”

Nashville’s Mustard

There are swaths of yellow right now in Elmington Park: small yellow blooms massed in the lawn. I hope the city doesn’t mow soon, because the yellow is Nashville mustard—our mustard—and it needs to go to seed and spread. I saw it on the way to Hebrew School, and as soon as I could, I went back and parked the car in the lot, then parked my body flat on the grass.

Continue reading “Nashville’s Mustard”

Cedar Apple

To me, this particular “spring ephemeral” is as welcome as a wildflower. It is a sign of the season: a “cedar apple,” doing its wacky thing in wet spring weather. This one is on our volunteer red-cedar tree in the front yard, and I’ve been waiting for the rusty, dry galls to wake from winter. Continue reading “Cedar Apple”

Hackberry Jam

Our dog loves hackberry trees. If there is a hackberry seedling within range of her face, she finds it. Under the neighbor’s boxwood, up the U-channel of the stop sign, poking from a storm drain, or wherever. She plucks the leaves with her teeth. She will chew as many as her leash lets her have time for. The seedling may be flanked by baby elm or privet or althea or bush honeysuckle of a similar size, but she only goes for hackberry leaves. Continue reading “Hackberry Jam”