Thursday, March 8, 2018

First Visit of the Year to Garbry Big Woods Sanctuary, March 5, 2018

Someone on Ohio Wildflowers posted a photo of Harbinger-of-spring seen in Franklin County which is in the middle of Ohio.  I hoped that meant Harbinger-of-spring was blooming here in Miami County. Tom thought it was too early to find it but he sat in the van and read while I went searching at Garbry Big Woods Sanctuary..

The first leaves that were big and noticeable were those of Puttyroot. I noted three areas that I will keep checking.  I want to remember these spots or I won't find the flowers later when the leaves have disintegrated.  The stalks blend in with the other foliage.

I was surprised to see Purple Cress buds just barely open.  It could still be a while before they open.  They never seem to be in a hurry.

I turned right at the T in the trail, still on the hunt for Harbinger-of-spring.

Instead, I found a chewed on animal skull...

and tiny Waterleaf plants putting out their first leaves.

On a dead tree trunk, there was a hole made by a Pileated Woodpecker.

And beside a living tree, Hepatica leaves were rising above the leaf litter.

I began to feel that Tom might be right.  By now, I was past the area where we generally begin seeing Harbinger-of-spring.  I decided to go just beyond the spot where the boardwalk crosses a swampy area.  I remembered that the Harbinger-of-spring at Brukner Nature Center is just beyond their swamp. 


No purple stamen showing yet but definitely Harbinger-of-spring. 

I kept searching.  Because the whole cluster of the white blooms are about the size of a pea, they are hard to find.  Usually if a person finds one cluster there are others nearby.

And there it was...peeking up between a couple curly dry oak leaves.  And the stamen were beginning to stretch up.

As I turned back, I found a few more Harbingers and even a couple Scarlet Caps.

Tom said, "If I had known the Harbingers were blooming I would have come with you."

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