Sunday, August 21, 2011

Ice, Twice

August 13, 2011
Ice Meadows of the Hudson River

After a week, I returned to the Ice Meadows, this time with my friend Marie, who is interested in local plants, medicinal herbs in particular.

It was a bit different than the last time we were here together, back in January !

This time it was not too cold to linger, and we could take as much time as we wanted to do some exploring.
But summer has turned the corner, as the now-spotted sarsaparilla leaves told us.

And the cranberries are juuuuust beginning to blush.

We visited both sides of the river today, but the west side was the most pleasant and fruitful.

Here, water meets land to form a unique environment.

Marie found yet another Smaller Purple Fringed Orchis, in fresher condition than the scraggly one I found here a week ago.

And I was surprised to see Ladies’ Tresses (just one plant),
about to bloom – I thought it was a late-season plant.
I didn't know that there was more than one variety, (silly me)
and the flowers were not quite open yet - so can't say which it would be, though Nodding Ladies' Tresses is the most likely.
Complicating the identification is the fact that this was a bonsai version of others I have seen elsewhere.

As we walked along the river’s edge, I showed Marie the
“oil slicks” that occur naturally here and are the result of bacterial action, not pollution.

Today I was determined to get a closer look at the frogs who inhabit the little puddle-ponds among the rocks, but what caught my eye was the COLOR of them.
This is a green frog, but he was really, really GREEN – as if spray-painted with model paint!

Could this have something to do with that oily sheen ?

Or some sort of algae?
As if to add to the puzzle, I spied another frog – this one bright turquoise !
(he's hiding in the center of the photo)

 I got a closer look at him. He was a copper-patina, Statue-of-Liberty color.

What’s going on here – does anyone have a clue?

1 comment:

  1. Hmm . . . . I wonder if somehow the Minks and the Greens have found a way to interbreed. Except for those ridges down its back, your frog sure looks like a Mink.