Thursday, March 25, 2010

Storing Up Spring

What crazy weather! I heard today we'll have snow by morning, and then the temperature will plummet down into the teens tomorrow night. Oh dear! What will happen to those fragile new flowers I found just yesterday? Not to worry, I'm certain the plants will survive somehow, even if the flowers freeze off. It's not as if we've never had snow and freezing temps this late in March before. At least it was still nice today, so I ran out to Bog Meadow Nature Trail to store up a little more springtime before winter returns tonight.

At first glance it still looked like winter out there, all brown and grey unless you peered close to see how the buds are swelling. And of course there was lots of Skunk Cabbage. Dear old Skunk Cabbage, whose beauty is so often disparaged! And yet it can be quite exquisite. Just look at the luminous frosted green of the sheathes around this spathe: the color of opals, or maybe chalcedony.

And what a rich ruby red these two spathes are! And of elegant, curvaceous shape, with a texture like fine leather.

The Bog Meadow pond was full to overflowing today, thanks to a dam constructed by beavers along the entire south side. I don't know how long these willows will live if their roots stay immersed in deep water, but today they were looking quite springlike, with silky little catkins shining in the sun. Look how the fur of these catkins is spotted, just like the tummy fur of a tabby cat.

A small wooden bridge led over a tiny stream, providing a dry spot to kneel and peer into the water. Aha! Look what's scooting about today: Water Striders zipping across the water, dimpling the surface with legs made waterproof by minute hairs.

This one seems to be chomping down on some prey. If the photo were better in focus we might tell what it's eating. I'm guessing maybe a red ant.

To see more really beautiful photos of Water Striders (and other great stuff), scoot on over to my friend Sue's blog, Water Lily, where she matches what's happening out there in the woods and waters with marvelous quotes from Thoreau.


Jens Zorn said...

Stunning photos! The Waterstrider is amazing---

Ellen Rathbone said...

A wonderful snapshot of spring. And hooray for skunk cabbage. Your tribute and descriptions are wonderful!

jane B said...

I love reading your blog and looking at all the amazing things you capture on film (or digitally, rather). Your writer's voice is so YOU, it's like we got to share a walk together. Thank you , Mom. Can't wait to see you.
love, Jane