Friday, August 30, 2019

Grafton Pond

Not far from my home in Wilmot Flat, NH, is Grafton Pond.  Owned by the Forest Society, it is full of secret little coves where you can't hear a sound beyond the wind and the loons calling.

Wild Raisin, Viburnum nudum

tall meadow rue


a quiet place for lunch

the last blueberries of the year

momma and baby loon

submerged log

there is a wood duck hiding there

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Pickerelweed Underwater

Pickerelweed is a familiar sight in July, covering the edges of ponds with purple. Colonies of pickerelweed provide a hiding place for fish, frogs, salamanders, and of course dragonflies, or as my friend from down south calls them, mosquito-hawks. 

Pickerelweed has a dense root system and stems which protect shorelines from erosion. This root system allows the colony to spread rapidly, but there is another way that pickerelweed spreads.

At the beginning of August, just about the time that arrowhead (duck potato, katniss, swamp potato, or wapatoo) starts to bloom, 

arrowhead (duck potato, katniss, swamp potato, or wapatoo)

the petals fall from the pickerelweed flowers and the stalks sink below the water. This probably helps protect the seeds from birds, but later on the seed heads fall off. Wind, waves, and currents roll the seed heads away to start new colonies.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Friendly Air Patrol

No mosquitoes on the pond this morning. Hundreds of dragonflies and thousands of spiders are taking care of them. 

I spent the entire morning floating in the shade with a good book, reaching up over my head to grab plump, ripe blueberries. Squadrons of dragonflies patrolled the pickerelweed. 

I just had to be careful that I wasn't grabbing a plump, ripe spider.