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Turkeys, Moss and Fiddleheads.

March 18, 2012

This afternoon I drove up to the mountain property to see what kind of bog plants I could dig and give a chance around the frog puddle pond.

I took my time and rolled the windows down to absorb every bit of this beautiful spring day.

As I pulled up the gate, I was greeted by a small group of turkeys in my neighbor’s field; the hens were taking their time, sauntering up the hill and taking little notice of me as I opened the gate.


But this was about raiding the seeping bog areas down between black mud spring sloughs and our little branch, the headwaters of Watson creek.

A couple of years ago I caught some fiddleheads waking up for spring while strolling with my morning coffee. These grow to be huge healthy ferns, the type I hope to see draped over the edge of the pond.

“Fiddleheads”, ferns waking up for the season a few springs ago:

I pulled a few of the fern rhizome clumps- they weren’t out yet, although a few were just in the process of breaking the ground. (The fern rhizome clumps are fairly easy to spot due to the mounds they make once the leaves die back in the winter.) I also cut a couple of “moss mats” from the large patches in the area and 3 other smaller ferns.

This was work, more than I had assumed (surprise). Wet clumps of root in mats 6″ thick were a chore to wrestle out of the bog to the firm ground where my truck was parked. The best way (short of bear hugging the 40+ lbs of organically infused mud) was to impale them on my landscape rake and drag them out. It now looks like someone or something has dragged a body into the bog for disposal; too bad my nephew Nick’s Cub Scout troop has already had their camp out there, otherwise this would make a great prop for a campfire ghost story.

At the gate, there is an immense sea of wild hosta, or “feral” perhaps would be a better term since they likely are reseeding from “domestic” plants placed there sometime 20 or 30 years ago. The new growth was barely breaking the surface and I dug a couple of clumps for the experiment factor or it all. No picture from today, but a couple of summers ago I did take a picture of this massive sea of hosta:

(I wasn’t exaggerating was I)

On the way out the hens were on the narrow gravel road and politely move into the woods so that I could pass. At closer ranges the red of their head and throat is much more apparent:

I came home and arranged some of the “plants”; it just looks like a mud hole right now although the plants collectively should break dormancy soon.

I almost forgot the moss; it (along with the baby hosta) is heeled in waiting for me to figure out where it goes:

That’s pretty much it for now. (One day I might remember to take a daytime shot or two of the pond so that it is actually visible….)

One Comment leave one →
  1. Clay permalink
    March 25, 2012 8:27 am

    Looks good, fiddlehead. Great turkey pictures too!

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