Journal for May 15, 2016

We’ve had many spring days, a few hot summery days, and then yesterday we had whirling snowflakes, and the temperature overnight got to 27 F.  Some small oaks, sumacs, grape vines and ferns looked wilted today, but most plants look like they survived the cold.   And the temperatures should get warmer now.

I’m still seeing brown stalks of last year’s flowers – these are the seed pods of Indian Pipe.

Indian Pipe


But the spring and even the early summer flowers are blooming.

Bird’s Foot Violet

Viola pedata 2


Bird’s Foot Violet

Viola pedata


Wood Betony

Pedicularis canadensis


Hoary Puccoon, Blue-eyed Grass and Sand Cress on Hidden Oaks Point

prairie flowers


Wild Plum

Prunus americana


Prairie Violet

Viola pedatifida



Hawthorne 2


Hoary Puccoon on Hidden Oaks Point

spring flowers


Spring Azure on a warm day

Spring Azure 4-25-16 1


Our friends Kevin and Arlene came to visit and walk.

Ken and Arlene


Their dog, Dottie, loved being here – she hated to leave.

Arlene and Dottie


Taylor and Ben are journalism students at Winona State University, and they came to do a story about our restoration project for the Winona Daily News.    We took them for a hike, and had a great time talking with them.  And, of course, we had to get a bench picture.

Taylor and Ben


I’m working in the woods on these sunny spring days – pulling the last of the Garlic Mustard before it goes to seed.



We had about a week of haze, when smoke from the wildfires in Alberta blew through.  We could see it in the air, and everything smelled like wood smoke.



Here are a few more spring scenes.

This is the savanna on the point above Big View Prairie where we cleared and mowed last fall.  There aren’t many prairie plants showing yet – it usually takes a few years for them to start coming back.

Big View savanna


The spring view from Big View Prairie

Big View Prairie


Hidden Oaks Point, looking north through Armund’s Gap.

Armund's Gap


The first fawn of the season – from one of the trail cameras.  This is our favorite trail camera right now – the scene is beautiful, and so many animals use the ravine and the stream that we get lots of pictures.

5-13-16 doe and fawn 2


The nights have been too cold to see many moths, but I’ve see a few nice ones.  This is a new one for me – it’s called The Scribbler

Cladara atroliturata 5-6-16 1


Gray Half-spot

Nedra ramosula


Hitched Arches

Melanchra adjuncta

Norman’s Quaker

Crocigrapha normani


Dark clouds coming just before a storm

Storm coming


A stormy sunset