Journal for November 29, 2006

There are muskrats living in the new beaver pond. We walked over to check it out, and three muskrats came swimming towards us to check us out.

They came very close and let us take pictures, but eventually they decided we’d gotten close enough, and took off.

We did a little restoration work this week. We cut down a huge Buckthorn – the biggest one we’ve ever found. It had many thick trunks, and was in the middle of dense woods, so it was very difficult to cut. But it was a female tree, so I’m glad we got it out of there – it may be the mother of all the Buckthorns we have on our land.

Then Mike started working on cutting a clump of aspen trees at the base of Hidden Oaks Point. They’re not thick trees, but they’re tall and require a lot of bending over holding the chainsaw.

Just as he finished cutting the last tree, his back went out – that stopped our restoration project for the moment. He’s recovering pretty fast, but I think we’ll wait a while before we do any more chainsaw projects.
This is the point with the cut aspens – looking more like a savanna.

Since Mike wasn’t walking much, I did a lot of walks on my own. The weather was warm and still, with mist and some drizzly rain.

American Bittersweet (Celastrus scandens) on the Knife Edge

Knife Edge Point

Cat’s Paw Prairie from the Knife Edge path

Narrows Prairie

The mist makes the prairie grasses look very red. This is an area in the Narrow Prairie with lots of Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) and Indian Grass (Sorghastrum nutans)

The gun-hunting season for deer ended on Sunday – the guys who hunted our land got a total of 21 deer in 3 days! And Danny had gotten 7 others earlier, when he was bow hunting. So the deer population should be much reduced this year.

I’m ready to start dividing my seeds. I learned last year that it’s easier on my back if I have the bags a few feet off the floor so I don’t have to constantly lean over to put the seeds into the bags. Here’s my set up for this year. I’ll put up the rest of the bags – I need 64 this year – and get started this week.