Those attending included:
Fay & David Connelly, Arlene Copeland, John & Ruth Hyde, Peggy Kane, Leona Lauster, Laura Ouimette, Betsy Russell, Nan Seyfried, Pat Weaver, Tim Wilbur.
Ontario Pathways began in 1994 when what was most recently the Penn Central Railroad was turned into trails. The trail is now open without detours from Canandaigua east to Stanley and then north to Orleans. Tim Wilbur (who did some critter hole filling during our walk) invites anyone to join the crew of folks on Wednesday mornings to meet up to clear the trails. You can check out designated crew days at ontariopathways.org or call 585-234-7722 to get on the Wednesday morning Email list to know where the crew will be each Wednesday.
Tim Wilbur with his unique walking stick: Nan being introduced by Betsy:
Betsy Russell who was responsible for beginning the Ontario Pathways Trail in 1994 introduced Nan Seyfried who studied and taught at Delaware State University before making the Finger Lakes her home.
Nan explained how handy the Newcomb's Wildflower Guide is for identifying wildflowers by identifying the flower type, plant type, and leaf type of a species. By taking the numbers assigned to each of these flower/plant/leaf types you check to see what pages that combination appears in the Newcomb's Wildflower Guide to identify the species. Peggy Kane gave it a go and found it easier with practice.
Nan told us that there are 40 species of asters and 70 species of goldenrod. She did not claim to be an expert of either but seemed to know quite a few on our walk along the Ontario Pathways trail.
New England aster, unknown goldenrod, and white asters:
Canada Goldenrod (evident by the gall on the stem). The chickadees love this white grub of a little wasp.
Smart weed: tearthumb princess smartweed:
Yellow tansy, bitter buttons: brought from Europe as a medicinal plant -
abortions in cows, tea herb for female cramping, ant repellant.
Sumac: good for lemonade. Vitamin C from Sumac helped Native Americans through the winters. Great winter food for birds. Nan had us try the sumac by setting the hairs on our tongues.
Leona listens for birds and Tim looks for critter holes:
John Hyde pointed out this Viburnum Opulus. Red berries,wild raisins, wild cranberry
Gray dogwood with white berries and red stems; blue berries on dagwood
Fuzzy caterpillars turn into moths. Smooth caterpillars turn into butterflies.
wide bands of colors on caterpillars and hearty fox berries...are these signs of a long winter?