Swamp

A large conservation area abuts our community. Most of the land is forested, but very different to the forests on Maine. While fern is common to both places, the forest floor is entirely underwater. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Eclipse 2017

Florida experienced a partial eclipse of the sun on August 21, 2017. It is possible to view an eclipse by looking up with special glasses to protect your eyes. You can also look down to see the image of the sun projected through the leaves of a tree. The overlapping leaves and branches create tiny gaps that project an image of the sun on a sidewalk, much in the same way a pinhole camera creates an image. Normally, these images are round—the unobscured disk of the sun. But during an eclipse, a crescent caused by the moon covering the sun is projected.  Continue reading

The Green of Spring

New foliage is so vibrant. Our forest practically glows with the yellow-green of new leaves. Our landscape was so different at the beginning of May. These last two weeks have almost made the grey winter seem like a distant memory. Click on the image for a larger view.

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A Spring Wind

A cold front moved our unseasonably hot weather out of Maine. Friday was a pleasant 70°F with a dry air and a strong breeze. This wind enwraps and enraptures us, as if the spirit of spring is inviting us to laugh and dance with the trees. Click on the image for a larger view.

An Explosion of Green

Our forest has transformed. The top image was taken on May 12th. The middle image was taken on May 15th. On that day, the temperatures reached 70°F. Today was even warmer. That is the last picture. The blue sky is being hidden behind a canopy of green. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Spring Trillium

Red trillium, or wake robin, is appearing on the forest floor. It is one of the first flowers of the season, taking advantage of the light before the foliage returns. Trillium is a striking plant, but its scent of rotting meat is for a slightly different audience. Click on the image for a larger view.

Wild Plum, Spring Blossoms

This spring has been wet and gray. The foliage is just starting to appear on our trees. However, our wild plum has come into blossom. This is our messenger of spring. One corner of our land glows with these brilliant white flowers. As the blossoms mature, they turn a deep pink. Click on the image for a larger view.

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New Foliage

May is here. We are starting to see this years foliage. The early green is so vibrant compared to the darker greens of summer. These particular trees are in Bates-Morse Mountain Conservation Area in Phippsburg, Maine. Click on the image for a larger view.

Snow Day

Today we are housebound. We are expected to receive 24″ of snow, about 60 cm, in blizzard conditions. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Winter Woods

Our forest in winter feels open. Unlike the other seasons, nothing is hidden. It is like walking into a large empty warehouse where the entire space seems to reveal itself, leaving little to explore. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Blue Jay in Winter

life_in_maine_bluebirdIt was a dark, snowy weekend. We had our usual visitors to our bird feeder: chickadees, junco, mourning doves, titmice, cardinals, and goldfinches. We usually do not have blue jays at our feeders, even though they are a common bird in Maine. These intelligent birds—they are a member of the crow family—have striking plumage in any season. If they were not so common, they would attract bird watchers from around the world. Click on the image for a larger view.

A Murder of Crows

life_in_maine_murder_of_crowsJust as the sun sets in December, huge numbers of crows come together to roost. I really do not notice these mass gatherings in other months of the year. These groups are not only large, but also noisy. Click on the image for a larger view.