Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Third wave ~ July 15, 2007

The heat & humidity were oppressive today -- Moira helped me by trampling down the growth happening under the tarped area. We didn't see anything tall enough to warrant cutting, but we did pick a crown to expose and begin some bud-snapping. Big black stormclouds were roiling in the distance, so we really put a burn on. The crown was exposed by gloved hands, buds and new root material was snipped off with fingers and put into a yogurt cup for removal from the site. We noted earthworms, crickets, mites, and beetles in and around the soil of the crown. We also found a good number of land-snails, with their iridescent shells shining delicately in the hazy sunlight.

Knotweed stalks were sparse and less than 1/2" in diameter, approximately 12 stalks per 3-square-foot plot, on average. There were three new sprouts along the western edge of the tarp, which I did cut.

Other vegetation at the site includes sumac, wild carrot (Queen Anne's Lace), and sweet clover -- and of course the ubiquitous poison ivy.

We had to cut our time shorter than previous visits, thanks to the encroaching thunderstorm; the flip side is that an hour-and-a-half seems to be an adequate length of time to spend doing future visits.

Goals for next time: begin sampling and cataloging other vegetation, bring jewelweed seeds and milkweed seeds for sowing, trample the tarp again, clip JK along the edges, estimate stalk size and density, do a little nature journaling.

I'd also like to get a sign created and erected to stick into the middle of the site, so people can tell what we're doing and why.

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