Thursday, May 1, 2014

Riverside Park and Aman Park in Ottawa County, Michigan

         Spring Beauty  (Claytonia virginica)
This week our adventure was to Riverside Park, then Aman Park.  It was cold, cloudy, and wet at Riverside.  There were just a few Bloodroot, Spring Beauty, and Purple Cress blooming.
 Purple Cress (Cardamine douglassii) Mustard family

 Riverside Park in Ottawa County, Michigan

Down the road to the east, still in Ottawa County, we drive to Aman Park.  At Aman the parking lot is near the edge of a steep ravine, it doesn't look like much until you take a peek over that hill.
Aman Park looking down at Sand Creek. 
There wasn't much blooming along the first part of the trail, just Periwinkle.  But as we walked on we began to see Spring Beauty, Large-flowered Trillium, Purple Cress, and a few Hepatica.  It was still cloudy, so not many flowers were open.  We walked to the northern bridge, then over to a large patch of Paw Paw trees, here we found Bloodroot but their blossoms were closed up tight.  Just then the sun popped out so we sat down and waited for those Bloodroot to open, and they did!
 Bloodroot (Sanguinaria Canadensis)  Poppy family

Well that was fun.  While Marie sat keeping an eye on the Bloodroot, I wandered around and took more pictures.
 Dutchman's Breeches (Dicentra cucullaria)  Fumitory family

 Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica)  Borage family, in bud.
Close-up of  Virginia Bluebells buds.

 Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides)  Barberry family
 Looking down on Blue Cohosh.
The Spring Beauty started to open, another favorite spring wildflower of mine.
Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica) Purslane family
Time to move on.  We decided to walk the trail along Sand Creek to the southern bridge.  This is a wonderful trail that winds back and forth, several times.

Some Large-flowered Trillium were open, and there were thousand of these plants just starting to show buds.

 Large-Flowered Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) Lily family

We also saw  Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum)  Lily family

We also saw a Wood Frog,

and a blue butterfly, perhaps a Spring Azure (Celastrina ladon).

We made it to the southern bridge, and started up the hill to the car when a gentle rain began.  We learned something on the way home. Stay away from dark clouds.  The gentle rain turned into a downpour, next pea sized hail started pounding on the car.  Before the hail stopped it was marble size, pelting the windshield, hood, and roof of the car.  Amazingly no damage was done.  It was so loud, and hitting so hard I thought for sure Marie would have a pock-marked vehicle.
What it looked like on the drive home,
and below hail, but I didn't get out and put a quarter next to it!  Again we had a great day and made it home just fine.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I always click on your blog when I turn on the computer. My jaw dropped at the first photo, oh my! What a beautiful portrait of a simple wildflower which grows without fertilizer or sprinklers or any other help. Amazing. That Bloodroot was so fast to open when the sun came out. Tom enlarged the one with the mosquito and there's yellow pollen on its hind foot. Again, amazing. The Blue Cohosh wins hands down for unusual color. That was an exciting hailstorm, like thousands of rocks hitting the car! Another adventure next week but please, no hail. M :)