Thursday, October 08, 2009
Out Of The Swamps, Into The Uplands
This is what my dry open upland areas look like right now. Bear and I walk through here every day and it's actually a nice mix of other colors too. The photo makes it appear as if it were only yellow flowers, but there are tiny blue curls, and a tall lavender plant that is not ironweed, but the name escapes me as I type.
This escapism happens often with wildflower names ...
Every plant in this picture is tough as nails. The soil is almost pure sand (Pure Florida sand of course) and heavy rains leach away nutrients quickly. It's primo gopher tortoise habitat and there are several active burrows in this Southwest corner of my property.
The skinny slash pines in the picture above are some teenagers I planted years ago.
They are spaced wide enough apart to allow ample light in for the grasses and forbes that my gophers need for grindage.
Nearby on the forest edge are a couple of longleaf pines that were growing there when I came to this property. They are finally old enough to make decent cones and the squirrels are happy about this.
I am allowing myself to hope that this is a sign of a fox squirrel visit, although it may just be the work of my greys.
Fox squirrels are in the neighborhood and very pine dependent, so I'm thinking (hoping) that one just happened to forage over here on my side of the fence.
Above you can see an unopened cone next to the devoured cone.
I feel sticky just thinking about taking that fresh cone apart.