Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fourth of July from the Seventh of July

Sometimes there are obstacles at
the random placement of the quadrats.
Arianna found a stump in her quadrat.
 While I was at home this weekend, I discovered that it is difficult to describe doing a meadow plant survey in a way that makes it sound fun.  Several times this weekend, I would explain that we put down a pvc frame, identify all of the plants in that frame, and estimate the percent cover of each species.  "We do that for about eight hours a day," I would say, and they would reply, "so you count grass for eight hours a day."

It helped if I actually demonstrated the proper plant counting stance or maybe picked up a blade of grass to point out the anatomical features that could be used to identify the species. Maybe that made it sound more fun.  Maybe not.
 We worked on the Fourth of July.  I tried to get some pictures of various inflorescence (flower clusters) while we were in the field.  I noticed that the tiger lilies (Lilium columbianum) were really blossoming this week compared to the week before.  According to Pojar and Mackinnon, the bulbs of these flowers can be steamed or boiled to be eaten or used as a peppery spice.

I'm pretty sure that this is orange agoseris (Agoseris aurantiaca).  Pojar says that the leaves of this plant can be "chewed for pleasure."

 These are the wispy inflorescence of a Stipa occidentalis.

 I think that this Bromus has pollen falling out of it.
This is the another carex sedge.  This is Carex pachystachya.  

While the rest of the group is measuring ground cover, Nico from France is doing separate measurements of saplings growing in the meadow.  Liam has been helping with this on some days, but I don't know all of the details yet. 

I was at a wedding this weekend.  Erin and Eddie from work.  During the middle of the ceremony, a swainson's thrush like the one that calls outside my window started singing.  I'm sure it wasn't the same one but it could have been a relative.  It seemed much more appropriate to sing during the wedding ceremony than at 5 in the morning.

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