Tag Archive | New York

A Heath of Bogs and Wetlands

A Heath of Bogs and Wetlands

The last few blogs, I featured some of the members of the heath family of plants including blueberry, huckleberry and swamp sweet bells. Another member of this family and sometimes mistaken for blueberry because of its white bell-like blossoms is the leatherleaf. Leatherleaf has dark green leathery leaves on arching shoots often growing along the […]

Looks Like a Blueberry, But It is Not a Blueberry

Looks Like a Blueberry, But It is Not a Blueberry

A shrub often mistaken for high-bush blueberry because it grows in the same habitat and also has white bell shaped-blossoms that bloom in the spring is swamp sweet bells. Sometimes called fetterbush, its blooms are clustered at the tip of its branches in one sided four-inch long racemes. Bees, butterflies and other pollinators visit the […]

The Blue Huckleberry

The Blue Huckleberry

There are many species of blueberries and huckleberries. In the last two blogs, I focused on several species of blueberry – lowbush blueberry and highbush blueberry and one species of huckleberry – the black huckleberry. There is another species of huckleberry that grows in the pine barrens and unlike the black huckleberry that has black […]

Orange Bells in the Forest

Orange Bells in the Forest

The other day, I talked about walking through a pine barrens woodland where I saw blueberries in the understory of the oak forest. (See: “White Bells in the Pine Barrens”.) In addition to the white bells, I saw the reddish bells of another shrub with similar attributes growing amongst the blueberries – the black huckleberry. […]

White Bells in the Pine Barrens

White Bells in the Pine Barrens

In pine barren forests on Long Island in New York, May is the time of year for an explosion of growth in the spring woodlands. The leaves of red maples, scarlet oaks, black gums and various heaths have fully extended to absorb the sun’s energizing rays. As I walk down a path through freshwater wetlands, […]

The Elusive Fern

The Elusive Fern

  It is almost impossible to see this fern unless you get on your hands and knees and look for it in peat bogs, sphagnum hummocks and wet interdunal swales. That is because this fern is tiny. It grows only to a height of three to four inches. Additionally, it does not look like your […]

The Tasty Fern

The Tasty Fern

One summer day, when I was walking along a wetland trail in New York, I was about to cross a small spring fed brook, when I happened across a muskrat. I stopped dead in my tracks to observe it without frightening the muskrat away. It walked up to a four-foot tall royal fern and proceeded […]