Sumac Prairie 2008

[To see photos and stories of this prairie in other years, go to the links on the main Sumac Prairie page.]

4/4/2008 – the prairie hillside


4/4/2008 – brush at the east end of the prairie


4/4/2008 – sandy area at the east end of the prairie


4/4/2008 – The prairie flowers always bloom earliest on Sumac Prairie.  It’s south-facing, and very steep, and it gets hot when the sun shines on it in the spring.  These are some of the earliest sprouts to come up.  They’re annuals called Common Whitlow Grass – not really grass – they’re actually in the Mustard Family.


This is the very top of the hillside, the east side, just where it turns into savanna.  The hill starts to flatten out, and the top has big old oaks, with a thicket of small aspens and Prickly Ash between them.


I’ve started clearing between the oaks.  I cut the brush with hand clippers or a hand saw, and treat the stumps with herbicide.   This area has been partially cleared.


Looking back from the cleared part, into an area with bigger trees that will have to be girdled.


4/14/2008 – One of several small animal holes in the sandy part of the prairie.  They’re made by a Burrowing Wolf Spider  (Geolycosa sp.), but I’ve never actually seen the spider.


4/27/2008 – A view of the sandy place where the spider holes are


4/14/2008 – Sand Cress – another early flower in one of the sandy spots – this one is not quite in bloom.


4/27/2008 – Sand Cress blooming


5/12/2008 – Birds Foot Violets on the prairie hillside


8/29/2008 – A view of some of the thickets that I’d like to get rid of.  This is looking from the overgrown savanna on the top western end, down toward the prairie.  It’s completely overgrown with sumac, Prickly Ash, and honeysuckle.  Under all this are struggling prairie and savanna plants that I’d like to liberate.


8/29/2008  This is the lower edge of Sumac Corner Prairie, looking down at the birch/aspen woods.  The aspens are starting to die – I girdled them a few years ago.  I did girdle the birches, but later, and I don’t remember which year I did it.

8-29-08 1 sumac corner pr


9/18/2008   Aromatic Aster – an aster that grows only on dry prairies

9-18-08 Aster oblongifolius


9/18/2008   Silky Aster – another dry prairie aster

9-18-08 1 Aster sericeus


9/18/2008   Flowers in the lower part of the main prairie

9-18-08 lower prairie flowers


9/18/2008   A small, bright-colored moth that’s found in prairie habitats called a Holomelina Moth.  I’m not sure of the species.

9-18-08 Virbia sp.