Walking in the woods this week has been a delight. Just enough snow to simplify seeing—shapes, silhouettes, colors all so apparent—and to have a page on which so many stories are written. A number of animal tracks leading to still unfrozen sources of water. I’m don’t read these tales in much detail due mainly to my ignorance. Next time I’ll remember my tracks guide.
Also seeds everywhere, Yellow Birch (Betula alleghaniensis), White Ash (Fraxinus american) and Hop Hornbeam (Ostrya virginiana) being the most prevalent. Literally tons of the stuff. Stored sunshine. Imagine the voles and other critters under the snow, like a bunch of neighbors at a winter potluck getting fat.
Bernd Heinrich writes in The Trees in My Forestabout trees “talking” to each other and essentially “agreeing” on which of a few species will have a bumper mast year while others defer seed production. The rich abundance ensures some will survive and the lean years serve to reduce the population of predators.
And while hiking out Rob saw an insect flying over the snow, probably a midge of some sort, but what do we know about any of it?! It was 25F!
There is so much to learn about the connections in life. Mine are no different than any even if I fail to understand or acknowledge them. In the end I’ll be muck in a bog somewhere, a place for seed to land. Maybe Purple Pitcher Plant (Sarracenia purpurea) will grow out of me their leathery leaves barely visible in the snow but their flower stalks dried brown and shedding seeds, more seeds for the future.