Bog Walk with Michael Kudish

by on Jun 24, 2014 | Category Event, Hikes
Bog Walk with Michael Kudish

Join the Catskill Native Plant Society and forest historian Michael Kudish on a hike through some of the most floristically interesting bogs in the Catskills. Meet at the fishing access parking lot off Debruce Rd/Willowemoc Rd across from Mongaup Pond Rd in Willowemoc. Heavy rain postpones. Bring your own lunch. Well behaved leashed dogs welcome. […]

Roseshell Azalea, or Pinxterblooms.

by on Jun 3, 2014 | Category Gardening, General, Plant Profile
Roseshell Azalea, or Pinxterblooms.

Now is the time to look for the one of the Catskills’ showiest shrubs, the Pinxterbloom Azalea, Rhododendron prinophyllum.  People who try to use common names for plants strictly will tell you that this plant is called Roseshell Azalea, and the Pinxter refers to Rhododendron periclymenoides, a similar but slightly more southern species.  But all […]

Bartrams in the Catskills

by on Apr 24, 2014 | Category Event, Hikes, The Catskills

MAY 10-11 (Saturday-Sunday) Joint Field Meeting of the Torrey Botanical Society, the Philadelphia Botanical Club, the Olive Natural Heritage Society and the Catskill Native Plant Society This meeting will try to commemorate the collecting trips to the Catskills in the 1740’s-50’s of John and William Bartram, two of America’s first botanists of note. Our first […]

Sticky Little Leaves.

by on Apr 6, 2014 | Category Gardening, General
Sticky Little Leaves.

Eastern Red Columbine, Aquilegia canadensis, emerging from its winter slumber on Wildcat Mountain.  Spring is starting now in the mountains, as the earliest species are now beginning to wake up.  Columbines are important to the ecosystem as one of the first natural foods of arriving ruby-throated hummingbirds, and valuable in landscaping because as poisonous members […]

Rosa multiflora, Robinia pseudoacacia & Populus alba

by on Mar 25, 2014 | Category Invasives, Landscape
Rosa multiflora, Robinia pseudoacacia & Populus alba

Maybe call this: addendum. Today, I’ve temporarily taken over a supervisory role monitoring landscape restoration efforts in Pelham Bay, Bronx.  Today validated a few things for me – which I hope is quite clear from the snap taken. Now, I realise Pelham Bay is a far, far, far away URBAN place, practically the antithesis of […]

Residential Landscape and Ecological Restoration

by on Mar 24, 2014 | Category Gardening, General, Landscape, The Catskills

As a trained landscape architect, I have found my industry to be a tad much in the grey area when it comes to ecological restoration.  We are often not plants people.  We are also not often scientists.  We are often chained to desks working on drawings on drafting programs for long hours without a relationship […]

Redwing blackbirds and willows

by on Mar 24, 2014 | Category Landscape, The Catskills

I love this photo by Christopher Martin . What says ‘spring’ in the Catskills better than these two earliest heralds of the season? The redwing blackbird is unmistakable with its flashy red epaulettes but the willow- well, I’d need a good hand lens and a working knowledge of willow stamens to tell you which species the […]

Forest health in the Catskills

by on Mar 24, 2014 | Category Science, The Catskills

As the smaller of two forest preserves in New York, the Catskills doesn’t often get all the attention it deserves. A few years ago,however, we got lucky. A research arm of the US Forest Service targeted the Catskills to do a few fly-overs using NASA technology (think planes with lasers) to help map forest health. […]

Winter Ferns in the Catskills.

by on Mar 14, 2014 | Category General
Winter Ferns in the Catskills.

If you thought your winter was hard, imagine living on top of a rock all winter, exposed to the wind the whole time. On top of this Catskill boulder we see Polypodium virginianum, rockcap fern, one of our evergreen ferns, and what looks like a very sad and droopy Dryopteris. Catskills Dryopteris species remain green […]

Sugaring.

by on Feb 13, 2014 | Category Edibles
Sugaring.

  The Catskills is one of the larger maple-syrup producing regions of New York State, and at this time of year serious sugarers already have their trees tapped and their buckets or tubes up. But it’s been a consistently cold winter so far, and there’s still time to get a tap or two in before […]