Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Wildflower Hike

I can't believe it's been three weeks since I led a wildflower walk for the Owen Sound Field Naturalists Club along the Bruce Trail on Old Baldy.  Sorry, I didn't actually take many wildflower pictures, because I was busy as the leader helping people identify what they were seeing.  But if you really want to see wildflower pictures, you can revisit my post of May 2015.

It was early in May, just as the leaves were starting to open, but the sun was still shining down on the forest floor, giving all those 'spring ephemerals' (wildflowers that depend on this early spring sunshine) the energy they need to bloom.  We followed the Mac Kirk Side Trail, marked by those blue blazes.

This was one of my few wildflower pictures, the Dutchman's Breeches, a picture I was pleased with.

But this is a nasty invader, the Garlic Mustard, springing to life in the sun.  It will spread relentlessly and out-compete our native wildflowers.  The local Bruce Trail Club organizes Garlic Mustard Pulls to try and keep it under control.
But once we came out to the cliff I did take several pictures, trying to capture this beautiful early spring season.  This is looking south.  Our house is just out of sight over the horizon about in the middle of the picture.

Looking straight west, the village of Kimberley in the centre along the road, and the old Talisman ski slopes in the upper right.
This early in the month, the Beaver River was running high, flooding well beyond its channel as it hit the flat land at the beginning of the long Silver Maple Swamp.

You can tell a lot by the trees at this time of year.  All the light yellow-green are Sugar Maples; the grey trees with no leaves yet are mostly White Ash.  And they are mostly young, marking the old pasture fields where they have grown in recent decades.

It was just that time of spring when the Pin Cherry leaves were out, the very first among trees in the woods, though mostly just small saplings.

As we headed out on the other trail, parts of the woods were a complete carpet of Dog-tooth Violet leaves, but very few blooms yet.  The whole hike was early enough that there were no bugs, so it was a beautiful day in the woods.

You'll see I figured out how to change my copyright.  Never thought about it before actually, but several of you have commented on it, so now we're up to date!


  1. No flies! Yay! Those early spring walks can't be beat.

  2. Lovely early spring pictures. I love the Dutchman's Breeches! :-)

  3. We often miss those little and short blooming beauties.

  4. I really did enjoy the views you did take...and that is not excellent photo of the Dutchman's britches!

  5. The Dutchman's Breeches are quite a pretty sight to see!

    If you get a chance to take it in, the Owen Sound Doors Open event is this weekend.

  6. That's a beautiful valley -- thanks for posting your photos.

  7. Lovely photos along your walk.

  8. Good for you for leading a hike to introduce others to the wonderful world of wildflowers.

  9. I'll bet you were a wonderful leader, so much knowledge you have to share!!