Journal for December 17, 2007

This is turning out to be a good old-fashioned winter.

It’s been snowy and cold, and I’ve been able to get started planting all the miscellaneous seeds that I couldn’t plant with the seed drill.

Last week I planted wetland seeds. We mowed and sprayed about 2 acres of the wetland this fall – an area that had been mostly pasture grasses, Wild Parsnip and Common Milkweed. We mowed it and then had it sprayed with Roundup, so I hope that the grasses will have been killed and the milkweed will survive.

Here are my two big bins of wetland seed.

And these are the seeds in the snow. They tend to collect in my snowshoe tracks, especially on windy days.

This is a view of the wetland field from the road.

I’m pretty sure this field has drain tile. Periodically we find pieces of old drain tile sticking out of the ground, and ditches forming where it’s gotten plugged up. I found one of these ditches running through the middle of the field – I hope that means that the tile is starting to deteriorate. I had some seeds that I collected in the tamarack swamps that I visited last summer, so I planted them in the ditch. Here I am planting Yellow Lady’s Slipper seeds. I hope I’ll find them blooming here someday.

The creek is looking very wintry these days. It runs all winter, but the edges freeze when the temperatures get colder, and the plants along the edges get covered in frost.

Walking in the snow is hard work – I wear snowshoes when it gets this deep. But the woods and valleys are beautiful and very quiet.

Western Valley in the snow

Birches on Indian Grass Point