Sunday, August 30, 2015

Raining at the Beech

American Beech (Fagus grandifolia)
Often in my walks I visit beeches. My favorites are mature trees of a 100 years or more, and I constructed the trail in our woods so it would pass several. Some may think me strange, but a walk in the woods for me is a visit with friends. 

While sauntering today I noticed it was raining beneath a large beech tree. At least it sounded like rain. It was, in fact, a slow but steady shower of beech nuts. The nuts and husks littered the ground beneath every mature beech tree I came to, so I'd say it looks like a good year for beech nuts. This is good because I see no abundance of hickory nuts in the forest this year. 

Also, beechdrops are just now beginning to come up. They'll be blooming now for the next few weeks. I hope to get better pictures of this strange, parasitic wildflower this year. With its lack of green chlorophyll and dull colors, I've found it to be notoriously difficult to photograph. I think I just need to catch good light.

Nuts and parasitic wildflowers—just two more reasons to spend time with beeches at the end of summer.


Beech nuts

Beechdrops, just now beginning to emerge and not yet blooming



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