Friday, April 18, 2014
It Must be Spring!
For me, the one sure sign of spring is the appearance of wildflowers. It was in January of 1986 that I opened a book in a
library and saw photographs of Garden in the Woods located at the New England
Wildflower Society in . I was hooked. Framingham,
That spring I went on my first spring wildflower hunt, visiting over twenty state parks, nature centers and preserves. At the end of those six weeks, I had developed a strong passion for day tripping, so I just kept going, eventually leading to my day tripping, picnicking, and recipe book, Cruising
with a Picnic Basket. Connecticut
Last week, when I spotted a notice in the
newspaper announcing a
guided wildflower walk at the Curry Creek Preserve, I was thrilled. This one,
led by Sarasota County Environmental Specialist Jeff Weber, was an easy hunt. I
just enjoyed the beautiful day and environment as Jeff pointed out all the
wildflowers on the one and one-half mile trail called the Pinebrook parcel. And
birds, On this day, Jeff spotted a swallow-tailed kite, a new species for their
bird list, bringing the total number to 103! Venice,
Curry Creek Preserve, is an 82 acre preserve purchased by the Sarasota County Natural Resources - Preserve Management in 2002. The native habitat includes a mangrove forest, tidal marshes, and scrub and pine flat woods. Their website also lists wildlife: gopher tortoises, alligators, river otters, eastern indigo snakes, and an assortment of wading birds, such as roseate spoonbill and wood stork. Oh yes, there is a creek, separating the Pinebrook parcel and the Albee Farm parcel, including a canoe and kayak launch located near the preserve's west entrance.
When I got home and deciphered my scribbled notes, I was surprised to count over 20 varieties of wildflowers, including Carolina jessamine, four-petal St. John's Wort, Chapman's Goldenrod, Yellow star-grass, Hoary pea, rose rush, and several clumps of hatpins.
A few looked somewhat familiar to me, but I surmise they are just different varieties in this state. Oh, if only I had thought to bring my wildflower identification book and journal to
with me! Florida
For more information on Curry Creek Preserve: www.scgov.net