Blog Archives

Remnants

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The blooming season has passed for almost all the wildflowers. The spectacular flowers are gone. Often in their place are winter remnants with their own unique beauty – unpretentious and simple. Although more difficult to identify in the winter, the … Continue reading

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Mountain Hemlock

This gallery contains 8 photos.

In most of its range mountain hemlock (Tsuga mertensiana) defines the upper portion of subalpine forests. Its elevation is variable and depends on latitude with the trees in Alaska ranging from sea level to 3,500 feet, while in the Southern … Continue reading

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Reaction to Stress

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Seven weeks (09-24-17) after the Cove Fire destroyed over 30,800 acres in Modoc County CA, Leonard and I were surprised to find fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium) and spreading dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium) blooming amid the ashes. At three weeks post fire (08-24-17 … Continue reading

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Recovering

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The Cove Fire burned nearly 31,000 acres not far from our house. This lightning-caused wildfire was finally contained on 8-16-17. Leonard and I are returning to an area on Modoc National Forest Road 40N11 each month to document the forest’s … Continue reading

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Plum Pocket Gall Fungus

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A sac fungus, Taphrina prunisubcordata, induces “plum pockets” or “plum bladders” in Sierra plums (Prunus subcordata). The infected fruits expand and elongate into large, soft, light green, hollow “bags” that are round or potato shaped. The plum pocket surfaces are … Continue reading

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Sierra Plum

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Sierra plum (Prunus subcordata) varies regionally. Some plants have yellow, sweet fruit while other Sierra plum fruits are red and bitter. Some taxonomists describe the many variations as subspecies or varieties, while others simply categorize all the different forms as … Continue reading

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Yellow Woolly Bear Caterpillar

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Although the species name of the yellow woolly bear (Spilosoma virginica) refers to the State of Virginia, this moth is found in wet forests and meadows throughout much of North America.  Appropriately, an alternate common name for S. virginica is … Continue reading

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