Berries white? Quick take flight! / Marie Curtis Park: November 28, 2018

REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN FOR WINTER WALKS at http://www.learn4life.ca / discover the outdoors

I will be continuing to post regularly throughout the winter.

 

Ever since I got a bad case of Poison Ivy rash on my legs as a child, I have been fascinated by this plant. Whenever we see it during our walks, I always point it out.

There is a nice patch (who else would use the word “nice” with Poison Ivy?} at Marie Curtis Park and I have often photographed the leaves:

Poison Ivy (Taxicodendron rydbergii)

the leaves in fall:

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

the flowers:

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

the berries:

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

the stalks:

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

and the buds:

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

Here are some berry photos from this morning:

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

A few rhymes which help to identify and avoid touching this plant:

Leaves of three, let it be

Leaves of three, quickly flee

Berries white, run in fright

Berries white, quick take flight

All parts of the plant contain the irritant urushiol and both the stem and fruit carry on their poisonous ways long after the leaves have fallen to earth. Eating these berries can be a lethal experience for a human being.

Here are some photos the park on this 0 degree, windy and overcast morning:

As usual, we took a little side trip to see the Shagbark Hickory:

Shagbark Hickory (Carya ovata)

Here are close-up looks at two of the birds from this morning:

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Hermit Thrush

Hermit Thrush

Hermit Thrush

Hermit Thrush

Thanks to Eugene who got this photo of a Muskrat:

Muskrat

Species list: Canada goose, mallard, American black duck, bufflehead, common goldeneye, red-breasted merganser, red-tailed hawk, ring-billed gull, hairy woodpecker, brown creeper, blue jay, white-breasted nuthatch, black-capped chickadee, hermit thrush, northern cardinal, American goldfinch.  (16 species)
Miles Hearn
                                                 NATURE POETRY
Bending above the spicy woods which blaze,
Arch skies so blue they flash, and hold the sun
Immeasurably far; the waters run
Too slow, so freighted are the river-ways
With gold of elms and birches from the maze
Of forests.
  – Helen Hunt Jackson (1930–85)

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