|Clouds Lift over the Hills behind Lake Wicwas|
One warm day was enough to encourage the trees to push out their leaves – even the oaks now have tiny leaves on their branches, and the hills are painted a pale-green as photosynthesis begins.
|Pale Green Leaves Emerging|
|Birch Tree Flower|
The tree pollen is very high right now, and is reported to be at record levels this year. All trees have some sort of flower which produces pollen; this is the flower of a birch tree, getting ready to release its crop to us allergy sufferers.
I think the Trillium is the most fabulous flower in New Hampshire, and there is a wonderful display of Painted Trillium right now on the Blue Trail in the Hamlin Conservation area. My feelings for trillium are likely based on my first experience with this flower. I came across it the first time on a group hiking trip in western NH. I saw a single Purple Trillium; I didn’t know what it was, but I knew it was something special. You can imagine my distress when the leader of the trip leaned over and plucked it off its stem, saying, “we’ll look it up later”. Ever since then I think I’ve felt a need to protect them (and felt a lot less respect for one particular trip leader). I have never seen a purple trillium again.
Another white, blossoming tree is the Pin Cherry, which can be found along Chemung Rd at the edges of the swamps. In a few months this will be an important source of food for many birds.
Speaking of birds, one can tell the insects are back by the Phoebes flitting out of the trees to catch an insect, and returning to its perch to wait for its next victim. The Swallows are also back, dive-bombing the insects just above the surface of the lake. Red-winged Blackbirds have been frequenting the bird feeders rather than spending time out in the marshes.
(Note that I added some additional information from my sightings on the May 8th entry.)