Station Cove Scout – March 25, 2020

Daudie, John, & Penny checked out Station Cove on Wednesday (separately – I was leaving, they were coming). We’d had 3 inches of rain in Brevard earlier in the week. Clearly they had a bunch down at Oconee State Park too. The falls looked amazing & in 15 years of visiting to the falls I’ve never seen the creek crossing flooded!
Photography by Daudie & John Colson  & Penny Longhurst.  Click on any picture to zoom & enter the slide show.


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Twin Bridges Scouts – March 14 & 18, 2020

Joe and Mary scouted Twin Bridges after the talk last week. That stimulated me to go and look also. Despite visiting about 3 weeks before the time of our usual field trips, we saw many of our old favorites. If you decide to go, please observe the following suggestions from the Carolina Mountain Club and others: (1) Go with your own family in your own car to the trailhead – no carpooling, and (2) keep at least a 6-foot distance between hikers. Stay safe so we can all go together next year.
Photography by Penny Longhurst & Joe Standaert. Click on any picture below the video to enter the slide show.


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Hardy Souls – March 6, 2020

The best Hardy Souls yet! Two creek crossings (no-one fell in), a little snow, and loads of plants. Thanks, Larry, for another great day!

Photography by Ken Borgfeldt & Penny Longhurst (Click on any picture to zoom)

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For the Love of Trees – Poetic Snippets and Quotes

Compiled by Cindy Carpenter, January 17, 2020

  •  White Pine: graceful growth; appearance in the wind- “….swift and enchanting changes of light against masses of bluish green.”- Loundsberry
  • “And there’s never a leaf nor a blade too mean to be some happy creature’s palace.” –Lowell
  • Cells- lakes of life (Flowering Earth- Donald Culross Peattie)
  • Carbon- the keystone atom in every molecule of living tissue (Peattie)
  • Chloroplasts are tiny jewel boxes holding sun-catching pigments. -re-phrased from David George Haskell, The Forest Unseen
  • “Like a lot of us humans it takes age and maturity to sweeten a persimmon.
    When its skin gets wrinkled and it begins to look saggy, then it’s in its prime…”
    (Doug Elliot e-newsletter)
  • “The great winter buds of the Shagbark hickory open like flowers in May.” – Julia
    Ellen Rogers, Trees Worth Knowing
  • Oaks – a family of cup bearers (scaly acorns, Trees Worth Knowing- Julia Ellen
  • The Scarlet oak is like a flaming torch set among the dull browns and yellows in
    our autumnal woods. (Rogers)
  • Bur oak (mossy-cup oak) acorns suggest dainty birds’ nests
  • Sourwood flowers on the ground look like teeth (suggested by a child to Cindy
  • “If you have joy, take it to the trees: there it will be chastened and heightened. If
    you have a grief, take it to the trees: there it will be chastened and relieved.” –
    from a 1954 paper by Dr. Carl Alwin Schenck, Goethe und der Baum in which he
    considers the saying an old rule.
  • “The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green
    thing which stands in the way.” –William Blake
  • “For there is hope of a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that
    the tender branch thereof will not cease.”- Job 14:7.
  • “…drink in the beauty and wonder at the beauty of what you see.” – Rachel
  • “…we don’t see the roots. We just see and enjoy the beauty. In much the same
    way, what goes on inside of us is like the roots of a tree.” – Joyce Meyer
  • “Trees are the earth’s endless effort to speak to the listening heaven.” –
    Rabindranath Tagore
  • “Trees are your best antiques.” – Alexander Smith
  • “Keep a green tree in your heart and perhaps a singing bird will come.” – Chinese
  • “A tree falls the way it leans.” – Bulgarian proverb
  • “Between every two Pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” – John
  • “For a tree to become tall it must grow tough roots among the rocks.” – Friedrich
  • “Once there was a tree, and she loved a little boy.” – Shel Silverstein
  • “A tree against the sky possesses the same interest, the same character, the same
    expression as the figure of a human.” – Georges Rouault
  • “We can learn a lot from trees: they’re always grounded but never stop reaching
    heavenward.” – Everett Mamor
  • “Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow. The shadow is what we
    think of it; the tree is the real thing.” – Abraham Lincoln
  • “We can grow up with trees and see them change with us.” – Bernd Heinrich, The
    Trees in My Forest
  • “Planting a seed is like planting a part of ourselves.”-Heinrich
  • “An old tree is an island of life in all seasons.” –Heinrich
  • “A tree practices priorities.” – Heinrich
  • Airborne acorn dispersers like blue jays give oak trees legs of life. Cindy
    Carpenter, inspired by Heinrich’s The Trees in My Forest
  • A tree’s delicate root system is full of surprises.
  • “Trees are motherships of biodiversity.” – Peter Wohlleben, The Hidden Life of
  • “Centuries of experience are stored in an old tree’s roots.” – Wohlleben
  • “Trees live their lives in the slow lane.”- Wohlleben
  • “Like a human social security system that ensures individuals don’t fall behind,
    trees’ well-being depends on their community.”- Wohlleben
  • When we hold an object made of wood, we are holding what has spent years
    outside, experiencing the environment in its own unique way. Cindy Carpenter,
    inspired by reading The Hidden Life of Trees
  • “Just breathe among the trees and you’ll know you belong.” Billy B.
  • New life is nurtured by an old log.
  • “He that plants trees, loves others besides himself.” – Thomas Fuller
  • “Every tree has little intimate signs that point the way to discoveries of the spirit,
    of art, of mechanics, of astonishment at natural miracles, and of reassurance
    about life itself in a violent world.” – from A Pocket Guide to Trees: How to Identify
    and Enjoy Them, by Rutherford Platt
  • Trees are towering examples of nature’s bliss and usefulness. – a theme from
    April Welch, Active Learning Exercise in theme development
  • “Strange that so few ever come to the woods to see how the pine lives and grows
    and spires, lifting its evergreen arms to the light- to see its perfect success.” –
    Henry David Thoreau
  • “Except during the nine months before he draws his first breath, no man
    manages his affairs as well as a tree does.” –George Bernard Shaw
  • “I like trees because they seem more designed to the way they have to live than
    other things do.” –Willa Cather
  • “So it’s not like the trees are in the environment; it’s like the trees are the
    environment.” – from Teaching the Trees by Joan Maloof
  • “The nature-lover is not looking for mere facts, but for meanings, for something
    he can translate into the terms of his own life.” – John Burroughs, The Gospel of Nature
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The Trillium erectum Species Complex of the Southern Appalachians. Katherine G. Mathews, PhD – November 8, 2019

Friday, November 8 – The Trillium erectum species complex of the Southern Appalachians
Presenter: Katherine G. Mathews, PhD,,  Associate Professor of Biology & Director of the Herbarium, Western Carolina University

Kathy’s presentation covered the distinctive characteristics of six Trillium species native to the Southern Appalachian region and then focused on three taxa, Trillium erectum var. erectum (red-flowered), T. rugelii, (white-flowered), and T. erectum var. album (white-flowered) and their putative hybrids. More information can be found in Christina Pampkin Stoehrel’s thesis.

A link to the Herbarium can be found here.

Ten Things to Know about Trilliums

Kathy has given us permission to post her talk, which you can access here:

Trillium erectum species complex of the Southern Appalachians

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McCall Cemetery Loop – October 25, 2019

Photography by Ken Borgfeldt, Penny Longhurst, & Harriet Walls. Click on any picture to zoom and view the slide show

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Bad Creek to the Whitewater River – October 18, 2019

Information about the construction and operation of the Lake Jocassee Pumped Storage Facility can be found here.

Photography by Ken Borgfeldt and Penny Longhurst. Click on any picture to zoom.

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Holmes Educational State Forest, Upper Loop – October 11, 2019

Holmes Trail Map

Photography by Ken Borgfeldt &  Penny Longhurst. Click on any picture to zoom and view the slide show.


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Jones Farm – October 4, 2019

Thanks, Betty for a great visit! Photography by Ken Borgfeldt & Penny Longhurst. (Click on any picture to zoom & enter the slide show).

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Mt. Hardy Trail – September 27, 2019

Photography by Ken Borgfeldt & Joe Standaert. (Click on any picture to zoom & enter the slide show)

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