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.

Gray and Overcast

life_in_maine_gray_and_overcastWe had a dark, wet weekend. Gray and overcast is not an infrequent forecast in fall. But the prediction does not do justice to the striking color remaining on the forest. Sadly, the foliage season is coming to an end. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Fruit of the Forest

life_in_maine_fruit_of_the_forestWhile not exactly edible, the falling foliage is the fruit of our forest. In the summer, it gives the gift of shade, in the fall, the gift of color. It then protects and feeds the ground. I am not sure of the fungus, yet another kind of fruit, but the green is a wilting lily of the valley. Click on the image for a larger view.

Fall 2016

life_in_maine_fall_2016The weather was a wet and overcast this weekend. Fairly typical for early fall. The photograph is of a red maple sapling in our field, which is trading its green for the rustic colors of fall. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Last Light

white_mountains_last_lightMt. Webster being hidden by the shadows of Mt. Field and Mt. Willey at sunset in Crawford Notch State Park in New Hampshire. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Grape Harvest

life_in_maine_grape_harvest_septWe harvested the last of this year’s grapes yesterday—three large bowls of fruit. We had been enjoying our grapes for the last three weeks. But with evening temperatures dropping, it was time to finish. These are entirely organic, no pesticides are used to protect them. We lose a few fruit to insects, more to birds, but plenty are left for us. Click on the image for a larger view.

Golden Hour

life_in_maine_golden_hourThe days are getting noticeably shorter. Where the daylight would last until after nine in the evening, it is now dark by eight. The warmth of summer still remains, but the season is waning. This is near the summit of Little Moose Island looking toward Schoodic peninsular in Acadia National Park. The Anvil, a small hill, can be seen in the distance. The island can accessed at low tide. Click on the image for a larger view.

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Small Cranberry

life_in_maine_small_cranberrySmall cranberry, Vaccinium oxycoccos, can be found in peat or acidic soils, which gives it its other common name, bog cranberry. This is one of the first plants to colonize burnt bogland and native Americans would burn bogs to stimulate its growth. Like the cultivated cranberry, these are tart. Naturally, this fruit is sought after by wildlife. This plant is on Little Moose Island at the tip of Schoodic peninsular in Acadia National Park. Click on the image for a larger view.

Exploitation

white_mountains_determinationAt some point in time, either deposited by a glacier or eroded from the mountain, a boulder settled in this valley. Why this tree thought it might be a good place to grow is a mystery, but it did. And from the size of the trunk, it was fairly successful. Click on the image for a larger view.