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Bud ‘n Bloom Garden Club enjoys bird-watching excursion

May 20, 2009
Westfield Republican
BROCTON — From the hilltop at Herbert C. Mackie Memorial Camp to the pond at hill’s bottom on Route 380 is a natural soft wood chip covered path through trees of mixed evergreen and hemlock. Dr. Terry Mosher recently guided the Bud ‘n Bloom Garden Club members along this path pointing out many wild flowers in bloom and commenting on various birds in the area. While mentioning the 95 bird species that nest in the area, he alerted the group to a black burnian warbler and its song high in the treetops. He noted that the best time of day to see bird activity is very early morning since birds migrate only at night. Growing near the top of the hill was a yellow flower which is Colt’s Foot and closely resembles a common dandelion. Other flowers observed were Mayapple, four species of violet, red trillium, jack-in-the-pulpit, lady slipper, dwarf genseng, solomon seal and so many more. Also edible plants such as cucumber root, purslane, sarsparilla were seen. A cleared-out amphitheater area with 22 benches named in honor of Dr. Willard Stanley, who was a SUNY professor, provided a pleasant resting spot. At the pond, a belted kingfisher was heard to give his rattle call and a great blue heron took flight over patches of yellow pond lily. A large number of fallen trees dotted the landscape and were due to damage during a winter ice storm. Upon the return trip up the hill on either side were numerous growths of skunk cabbage in full foliage dotted with unfurled ferns. An interesting note about the birch tree is that it’s curly bark will help campers start a fire even though it might be damp. After a short motor trip to Luensman Overlook Park, the group enjoyed a picnic supper prepared by Audrey Parker. She served a zesty potato salad, quesadillas filled with ham, cheese and fruit and a velvety chocolate cake made with cherry chip pie filling. Angie Smith held a business meeting to finalize plans for the plant sale to benefit Literacy Volunteers and flower planting at Barker Library. The next meeting will be at Sally Patterson’s iris garden, Woodward Drive, on June 10.


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