June 22, 2015

Summer Solstice Refreshment at Great Meadows

Several monthly walkers and I stepped out onto a puddled trail last evening where lush June foliage hung heavy from some 2.25" of Solstice rain that had fallen throughout the day.  Silky dogwood buds were bursting open, bird chatter filled the humid air, and the heady fragrance of milkweed and white sweet clover blossoms permeated our senses.  A tattered bronze copper (Lycaena hyllus) butterfly tucked into the thick clover growth for the night.

Puddles lined the dike trail like runway lights, a rare sight during this drought stricken spring.  Still with all the dryness, we found abundant blooms of silky dogwood, winterberry, yarrow, milkweed, common St. Johnswort, milk parsley (just beginning), curly dock, yellow avens, and white sweet clover.   

An approaching cold front piled clouds along the western and northern horizons dramatically catching and deflecting the setting sunlight.

As darkness approached, green frogs began their low groan, great blue herons flew in for dusk-time feeding, and young wood ducklings appeared with their mom skittering among the rain-bejeweled lotus leaves feeding and exploring.  Toward the end of our walking, the male and female beaver from the eastern-most lodge swam up to us and circled close in the rosy water, without a tailslap.

Our evening ended with the twinkling light of fireflies filling the woodland borders of the parking lot...all a perfect beginning to summer days ahead.

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