[To see stories and photos from other years, see the links on the main Wetland page.]
This year was the first year when I’ve felt hopeful that we may actually be able to eliminate most Wild Parsnip from our land. The parsnip areas I’ve worked on in the past didn’t take nearly as long this year, so I had time to pull out parsnip in a large area that I’d never worked on before – and had never really explored before.
I found several interesting species this summer – a new plant for the farm, Snowy Campion, and a butterfly that I’ve only seen here once before: a Reakirt’s Blue.
And I planted one new wet prairie in the field below the old farmhouse.
1/6/2019 The beavers made a winter food pile in the creek just above the driveway.
1/15/2019 The beavers also started gnawing on the larger trees that grow along the creek. We’re fine with that except for this tree, which is right next to the driveway and holds several of our trail cameras. Our fencing seems to keep them out – so far.
2/25/2019 We got so much snow at the end of February that the banks of the creek turned into snow cliffs.
3/11/2019 Promethea Moth cocoons on a small Wild Cherry tree
3/14/2019 High water in the creek
3/14/2019 More snow melt
3/18/2019 Another of the beaver gnawed trees
4/16/2019 This tree is still hanging on. We keep expecting to find it down, but it’s still standing even now, in early 2020.
5/22/2019 Marsh Marigolds between the old and new driveways
6/22/2019 I found several more clumps of Wild Iris this year. I collected and planted seeds for several years in the early 2000s, and the iris clumps are finally large enough that I can see them.
6/28/2019 This is a field that used to be almost all Wild Parsnip. We mowed it for several years, and then I started pulling. Now I pull whatever parsnip I find and there’s less every year. This photo was taken before I’d pulled any parsnip this year.
7/16/2007 This is an old photo of the same parsnip field.
7/7/2019 Snowy Campion – I found it growing along the creek. It’s considered a species of special concern in Wisconsin.
7/7/2019 The flowers of Snowy Campion hang facing the ground.
7/9/2019 The caterpillar of a Cattail Caterpillar Moth
7/11/2019 A very blurry photo of a Reakirt’s Blue – an uncommon stray in Wisconsin. This is only the second time I’ve seen one here.
7/24/2019 This is a new field I discovered – one that I’d never explored before. It’s got lots of sedges and common milkweed, but also lots of parsnip. It’s below and across the creek from the old farmhouse.
7/24/2019 Common Milkweed and Wild Parsnip in the newly discovered field.
8/24/2019 This is a field where we’ve mowed and pulled parsnip for several years. The dominant plant here is Reed Canary Grass. We can’t get in with a sprayer, so we’re going to try planting it with sedges and aggressive native forbs, and mow it frequently, and see if we can improve its mix of plants.
8/24/2019 Canada Goldenrod and Ironweed
8/31/2019 Monarch on Tall Sunflower
8/31/2019 Giant Swallowtail on Joe Pye Weed
8/31/2019 This year Blue Lobelia, Swamp Betony and Common False Foxglove (Agalinis tenuifolia) grew in the wet shallow ditch along the driveway. We held off mowing until they had all gone to seed.
8/31/2019 Common False Foxglove (Agalinis tenuifolia)
8/31/2019 Swamp Thistle
9/4/2019 Tall Sunflower
9/10/2019 This is the mowed path through the old parsnip meadow toward the old farmhouse. There are lots of sedges here, mixed in with the Reed Canary Grass. I’m hoping that by mowing, we can encourage the sedges, and discourage the RCG.
10/23/2019 The beavers were determined to build a dam in the culvert under our driveway. It took about a week of removing every stick to convince them that it wasn’t a good place to build.
10/23-2019 Here’s the culvert after dam removal.
10/25/2019 Willow leaves with frost
12/20/2019 Planting the Reed Canary Grass field. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon, and only took a few hours.