Thursday, October 25, 2007

Screech Owl

We were very excited last year to see a screech owl in our neighbor's tree.  Last night, we saw one in our own tree--saw it fly to a hole, go inside, come out and fly away.  It would be very exciting if it would nest there.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Red Maple

Sometimes it seems as if every single autumn leaf is a work of art. Of course, some are prettier than others. The three central leaves here are red maples, Acer rubrum. NOT the cultivar of Norway maple ("Crimson King etc") that many people call red maple, but real red maples. They are pioneer species, often hybridize with silver maples. Their sap can be boiled down for maple syrup, but it takes twice as much as with sugar maple. Red maples flower very early in the spring with tiny red flowers. They often grow in swamps and bogs and turn color very early--brilliant scarlet.
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