Thursday, March 31, 2011

Poor Butterfly

Yesterday I watched an insect fluttering close to the ground. It was a hop merchant butterfly, the earliest butterfly to become active in spring. The hop merchant can do this because it hibernates over the winter. This allows it to go about far earlier than other butterflies that do not hibernate but rather, hatch out from eggs laid the previous fall.

Today, the warm weather held and the hop merchant had a fine time. But tonight’s snow and tomorrow’s snow and rain will probably do the little orange-and-black butterfly in. Perhaps it has the ability to find shelter and thus stick out the storm, I just don’t know. I hope it can.

I must sound silly, worrying about a butterfly. But everyone needs someone to care for them…even butterflies.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

DIF&W Short-Changes Brook Fishermen

April 1, the first day of trout fishing in brooks, streams and rivers, a date that I anticipate with a passion. In fact, just the thought of going trout fishing keeps my spirits high during the winter months.

Of course April 1 is an arbitrary date and has no connection to fisheries management. Ideally, streams should open the first of the year and if anyone has the intestinal fortitude to go fishing, then more power to them. If they catch anything, they should get an award.

But while the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (DIF&W) recently opened lakes (with certain exceptions) to year-round fishing, it has steadfastly refused to allow those of us who enjoy tromping along little wandering brooks and streams, to have an advantage.

The thing is purely on account of tradition. But then again, the opening day was once April 15. So what happened to tradition when, many years ago, DIF&W changed the date to April 1?

Anyway, we have had some perfect conditions over the last week or so. I visit my opening-day stream and literally drool, all the while shaking my head at the needless stubbornness of DIF&W.

And now, after all the anticipation, waiting and hoping, the National Weather Service predicts that a Nor’east snowstorm will slam us on Thursday night and continue during the day…opening day, Friday.

Will I still go out? I haven’t missed a season in over 50 years and hope not to miss one now. If humanly possible, I plan to at least go through the paces of fishing. But why can’t I and every other brook-fishing Mainer, be allowed to go today, when conditions are perfect? It’s just plain mean.

I have included some photos of my yard here in Waldo. Note the lingering snowbanks. I’m in a north-facing valley, where sunlight comes late and departs early. Looking at the photo, does it really seem as though we need any more snow?

Oh, I have also included a photo of some crocus blooming along a woodland path out back. This is my “before” photo. I’ll post another picture of the same flowers (or the same location, at least, depending upon snow depth) as an “after” shot.

All I can say is that this winter stuff is getting old, real fast. I want to go trout fishing. Badly.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Turkey Vultures, Wild Turkeys Seen in Waldo

Just over the treetops, a huge bird soared, wings held up slightly, at a dihedral, the edges of the primaries fluttering in the breeze. Turkey vulture. The turkey vultures have arrived in Mid-Coast Maine.

In my youth, these birds were unheard of. But now, turkey vultures are regular fixtures of the Maine skies beginning in early spring and continuing until early fall.

While some may be tempted to suggest that global warming has drawn these huge scavengers north, the truth is far more prosaic. The Interstate Highway System, coupled with increased traffic on other primary and secondary highways is the real reason for the turkey vulture invasion.

Turkey vultures follow the retreating snowpack north each spring, seeking road-kill carrion or, as some bird-watchers like to say, “TV dinners.”

Anyway, I watched the vulture for a while and then continued on my way. Later, upon returning home, I heard a familiar sound coming from back on my woodlot. Wild turkeys. The gobbling told me that were I a turkey hunter, it would be easy pickings. But since turkey season falls smack dab in the middle of the year’s best trout and salmon fishing, I don’t bother going out.

But the presence of turkeys also alerts me to expect trouble with my garden. Groups of turkeys often invade my garden beds, scratching and uprooting vegetable seedlings. It’s a full-time job to keep them at bay with lots of hand waving, yelling and sometimes a little cussing.

But that’s the price we pay for living in the woods and going hand-in-hand with nature. It’s worth it, too.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Northern Bay Adds Taste of Summer

A television ad for a seafood restaurant chain made my mouth water for lobster. So I called my friends Dan and Tony and they, too, were ready for the first lobster feed of the year. So Dan picked up a good-sized lobster for each of us, as well as six pounds of clams. Then the two came to my place, where I had a large kettle on the boil, ready for our seafood.

But we soon encountered a problem. I wasn’t sure if Dan was going to bring clams, so I picked up five pounds. This made a total of 11 pounds of clams, an awful lot for three guys, especially on top of a big old lobster.

So what to do with all those clams? We could in no way eat them. So it was decided to cook them anyway, eat what we wanted and leave the balance at my place. The next day, I would shuck them and make pickled clams, a favorite dish among our little group.

After shucking and rinsing the clams in their own broth, I packed them into Mason jars and added to each jar, two or three dried leaves of northern bay, a slight sprinkle of Old Bay Seasoning and then covered them with white vinegar. Then the jars went into the refrigerator, where the flavors of all the ingredients could properly mingle.

I harvest leaves of northern bay, Myrica species, in late summer, when the sweet, bay scent is powerful and the essential oil is most potent. Dried and stored in an airtight container, these are ready for use any time in not only pickled clams and mussels, but also soups and stews.

In about one week, we will tap into our pickled clams. And I’m sure that the extra flavor imparted by those wild bay leaves will give us a wee taste of summer.

These pickled clams are a delicious snack. I haven’t yet met anyone who could eat just one.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Wild Versus Cultivated

The switch from hunter-gatherers to the more settled lifestyle of tillers of the ground changed the nature of human civilization. By saving seed and domesticating animals, people were enabled to settle and stay, almost anywhere weather and climate permitted.

So now we raise everything that we need, negating the need to hunt game, catch wild fish and forage for wild plants. But is this really such a good thing?

Most people now fish and hunt for sport and enjoyment, not because they need the food. And wild plants are, for the most part, a novelty. But consider the following.

Nothing that we labor to raise comes easy. Nothing. Want your own apples? Better prepare for a deer invasion. The only thing that keeps the tree-destroying ungulates away is a very tall wire fence.

Want to raise your own fish? I do, simply because I love having trout available when I want them. But each year, a mink visits my ponds and kills whatever trout remain. I try and catch them all out before the mink arrives, but that never works. Other people lose their fish to droughts. The whole thing is costly and fraught with frustration.

Vegetables. I love cabbage, broccoli and in fact, all of the brassicas. But those awful cabbage worms work hard at destroying my crop. The only answer, other than pesticides, is to cover the plants with a special cloth that allows sunlight and moisture to penetrate but (hopefully) keeps the cabbage moth out so that it can’t lay eggs that will later turn into those nasty, green worms. But the cloth is expensive and strong winds often blow it away, giving the moths time to do their dirty work.

I love root crops, too. But my carrots always fall prey to root maggots. The same goes for turnips and rutabagas.

My dreams of being a sheep farmer were dashed when coyotes began killing my prized horned Dorset sheep.

Hopefully, the above examples are sufficient to illustrate the difficulty in raising food. The battle is worth it, of course, since whatever we manage to salvage from insect, avian (wild turkeys often mow down vegetable seedlings) and mammalian interlopers is of far better quality than what we might buy.

But let’s consider a contrasting point of view. Fish, wild freshwater fish, are available in huge quantities. I’m not talking about trout and salmon, either, but rather I mean warmwater verities, ultra-prolific species such as white and yellow perch, black crappie, cusk and hornpout (bullheads). These abundant fish all make fine eating and catching and keeping numbers of them absolutely does not harm the population. In waters where people do not remove sufficient numbers, these species often become stunted…too many fish vying for a finite amont of forage.

How about wild game? The fact is, and this is an important point, wild game cannot be stockpiled. It’s a case of use it or lose it.

Finally we come to wild plants. Every year about this time I ask myself if it’s really worth it to work so hard at planting a garden. After all, I could do as well by concentrating entirely upon wild plants.

Wild plants seldom fail because of pest problems. We don’t need to plant them because they grow on their own. Given this, why do most of us continue to work so hard at raising cultivated vegetables, all the while eschewing the high-quality wild plants that grow all around? I don’t have an answer to that.

At the least, it only makes sense in this time of economic woes, for us to embrace what was always there. The wild plants won’t fail us.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Geese, Robins and Coltsfoot

It was so cold last night that it killed the lettuce seedlings in my solar-heated greenhouse. Tonight should see temps in the teens, a frightfully disheartening situation at a time when spring should have already spring.

But wait a minute. Just because we humans judge seasons by certain indicators, plants, animals, birds and fish have a totally different set of criteria to mark and guide their movements and actions.

For instance, huge flocks of robins arrived in Waldo a few days ago, just ahead of that big snowstorm. I always feel sorry for them when something like this happens, but on the other hand, songbirds are a tough lot. They’ll make out okay. And besides, birds need to arrive as soon as possible in order to begin the process of claiming territories, choosing a mate and so on. Also, if a nesting goes awry, an early bird often has time to try again.

Likewise Canada geese. This morning, a lone goose flew over my house at exactly 5:26 a.m. Each year one or two geese do their fly-by, telling me that despite cold, snow and ice, the season has begun. I suspect that the poor goose that I heard this morning will have to seek running water for a while, since all the lakes and ponds are still solidly frozen.

While spring is running late this year, it was well ahead of schedule last year. In fact, coltsfoot, Tussilago farfara was in bloom at this time last year. These are those bright yellow flowers that grow along roadsides, especially on gravel banks and along streams. Seeing the mass of yellow coltsfoot flowers, some people erroneously assume that dandelions are in bloom.

While coltsfoot has some medicinal uses, I feel that its true value lies in its simple beauty. The first colorful wildflower of spring does not need to claim any more attributes. Simply being there for us to enjoy is quite enough, thank you.

Later in the season, coltsfoot flowers and flower stalks die back, following which the leaves appear. I’ll try and remember to take some photos of them and post them here.

So keep an eye out for the brilliant-yellow blossoms of coltsfoot, a wild Maine plant that I very much admire.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Lingering Winter Lessens Tick Threat

The first full day of spring, 2011, brought with it a major snowstorm. Normally, winter-weary Mainers can take such things in stride. But this particular storm was just the leading edge of a long stretch of winter-like weather, including intermittent snow showers and sub-freezing temperatures.

Needless to say, all our springtime outdoor activities are necessarily placed on hold.

Hope deferred makes the heart sad and the return of winter has saddened many hearts. So can we find anything at all good about this? To use another familiar phrase, “every cloud has a silver lining.”

Well, the silver lining here involves the life cycle of ticks, those nasty little critters that cause not only itching and infections, but also Lyme’s disease, a debilitating illness.

Anyway, several years ago I interviewed a wildlife biologist with The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. The thrust of my story was how ticks operate and how they impact warm-blooded animals.

I learned that ticks fall from their host animals sometime in late winter or early spring and land on the ground. If, as in last year, snow has melted, ticks are able to successfully reproduce, in large numbers. But…if the ticks fall on snow-covered ground, as in now, most of them die and only a few survive.

Last year, I removed countless ticks from my poor hide. Of these, two had managed to take hold and bite. The sites where the ticks bit are still evident and sometimes, they itch. And yes, I was careful to remove the heads from the bite site. Tick bites are terribly unpleasant.

So at least this unwelcome spate of polar weather isn’t all bad. Perhaps this year we can enjoy the outdoors without undue harassment from ticks.

And eventually, spring must arrive for good. It has to, doesn’t it?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Orpine and Garden Gnomes

Finally, for much of Southern, Mid-Coast and Central Maine, a few wild edible plants are now available. Today, I found some new shoots of orpine, sedum purpureum. These look vaguely like little cabbages and while small, say fingertip size, the entire plant is edible.

These make a fine trail nibble for hikers and fisherman and also, add an interesting dimension to salads.

Next, Oenothera biennis, wild evening primrose, is ready now as well. The young leaves from the basal rosette (leaves radiating out from the stem and lying flat on the ground) are another salad ingredient. The roots of these are edible too, and are best prepared the same way as parsnips.

And the ground ivy that I so laboriously dug out of the snow only days ago is now exposed to the sun and ready for harvest, no digging required.

With outside temperatures in the low 60’s, I found it difficult to sit inside and do office work. So I took a folding chair and sat in the sun for a bit. The warm sunlight on my face was welcome, as was the opportunity to finally sit outside without coat or jacket.

While sitting and enjoying the day, I glanced down to see that snow had left the weeping willow in front of my house and now I could see the little garden gnome lurking at the shrub’s base. I almost expected to hear a very British voice saying, “spring is here, spring is here.”

Of course we can’t expect today’s warmth to last. It’s not even officially spring…at least not until Sunday. But even so, we can finally and with much certainty, say goodbye to winter. See ya next year, old man.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Snow Shovel Foraging Take Two

Perhaps a month ago, I wrote a blog about “snow shovel foraging.” I had planned to go out and do just that, too…shovel my way down to bare ground and harvest some ground ivy for a vitamin-filled, bitter tea.

But immediately after posting my blog, it snowed. And snowed. And snowed some more. In the end, I had no idea where anything was. It was so deep that it completely covered a two-wheeled, contractor’s wheelbarrow. So I decided to wait for the snow to recede, at least enough for me to get my bearings and make a rough determination as to the lay of the land.

So today, snow had sunk to the point that I discerned the outline of one of my raised-bed gardens. Knowing that ground ivy grew along the north end of the bed, I grabbed a snow shovel and had at it.

But the snow was granular, all frozen together in great, big clumps, too much for my plastic snow shovel to handle. So I got a long-handled spade and finally managed to dig down to the ground. And there, as suspected, was my ground ivy, as fresh and sprightly as ever.

So snow shovel foraging works…it’s just not the easiest thing in the world. At least its good to know that if necessity dictates, at least a few wild plants are available to us year-round.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Worst Road In Maine

This past Saturday I was privileged to be the speaker for the York County Master Gardener Association’s annual meeting at Laudholm Farm in Wells, Maine. I drove from my home in Waldo to Topsham, where I hopped in the car with Just Write Books publisher Nancy Randolph for the trip from Topsham to Wells. Nancy took care of selling books after my presentation, a good thing because I’m, as my Scottish pals would say, “noo sae good” at selling things.

Anyway, on the way down to Nancy’s, I noticed a dead cat in the road. On the way home, I passed the “cat” from the opposite direction and was amazed to see that it wasn’t a cat, but rather a raccoon. Which reminded me of an old man, long gone, who used to live just nearby. Old Russ had a speech problem and substituted “t” for “c” at every opportunity.

So without even thinking about it, I spoke out loud to myself and said, “I thought it was a tat, but now I see it’s a ‘toon.”

All of which goes to show that spring has sprung. Raccoons, skunks, muskrats and all manner of other critters are working their way out of hibernation and going about. So keep a weather eye out for animals crossing roads. They are out in force.

Continuing on with Saturday’s events, I arrived home around dusk. Going from the fine roads in southern Maine to the unpaved, secondary road where I live was a real eye-opener. While the road was badly potholed and very muddy that morning, it had completely deteriorated during the brief time that I was gone. Mud season had arrived, precipitously, to say the least.

In the perhaps 45 years, give or take, that I have driven this road, I have never, ever, seen it in such dire straits. Years of adding low-cost, bargain basement dead sand instead of true gravel have taken their toll. Ruts are everywhere and so deep that upon approaching a truly bad section, a motorist needs to stop and assess the situation before proceeding.

In a number of places, there were absolutely no choices, since the width of the road was churned to a quagmire and left, right or middle made absolutely no difference. So the question of speed presented itself. “Do I back up and try to go fast in hopes that momentum will carry me through? Or do I take it easy and try and seek some kind of high ground?”

After successfully negotiating two particularly troubling sections, I arrived at a point about 50 feet south of my driveway. But that was the worse section of all. One ridge, of sorts, remained. I hoped that keeping two tires on that would provide sufficient purchase to get me through the last major pitfall.

So on I went, all the time keeping my 5-speed manual transmission in first gear. Halfway through the gauntlet, the ridge gave way and my little sedan was engulfed, sucked deep in muck.

“Thooomp,” it went. Anyone who has ever bottomed out on a muddy road will recall not only the sound, but also the total feeling of despair that accompanies the process. However, fortune favored me and by keeping my wheels churning I was able, little by little, to progress forward in small but steady increments.

So I made it home, thankful for small blessings.

The next morning I headed out to church, going up the road instead of down through the scene of my former discontent. That section of road was slightly better and by dint of slow (no more than 5 mph) speed and strict attention to which path of travel offered the best option, managed to reach the far end of the road and on to better climes.

But upon shifting through the gears once upon the paved road, I noticed that my car shimmied, and badly. Getting dragged down in the mud has done something to my car’s front end.

This all makes me much less inclined to pay my property taxes ahead of time, as is my usual practice.

Mud season is one thing and bad roads are part of life in the country. But the East Waldo Road is in a state of criminal neglect. I hereby nominate said cowpath as the worst road in Maine. If anyone thinks they have a viable contender for that ignominious title, just let me know. I’m anxious to hear from you.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Maine Weather

Every year about this time, I begin taking the long-range weather forecast seriously. I get this online from National Weather Service.

Some years ago I discovered how much fun it is to write down the predicted temperatures for the next 10 days and continue doing that each day. It simply amazes me how much the prediction for any one day can change over a period of 10 days.

For instance, the weather for March 17, St. Patrick’s Day, has gone from cold to warm, sunny to cloudy, rainy to showery. Even so, it is possible to see trends and that seems the key to understanding this data.

Of course April 1 is a big one for me, it being the first day of open water fishing in brooks, streams and rivers. And every day, beginning about now, I either smile or frown, become elated or mildly depressed, depending upon what that 10-day forecast says.

Along with their predictions, the online forecast also gives average high and low temperatures. So for me, it’s comforting to know that the average opening day of fishing season temperature is in the high 40s. That means, of course, that it could turn out much warmer.

On the other hand, I have gone out and tried to fish on April 1 in blinding blizzards, times when it was so cold that my fishing line froze to the rod. I always hope that those days won’t happen again. But they will, of course.

It’s great fun to play around with predictions and averages. But it all just points out one thing. There is nothing more unpredictable than the Maine weather.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Chives Alive

While deep snow continues to prohibit me doing any “snow shovel foraging,” today’s rain has melted the snow and ice from a small portion of garden in front of my house. And there, pushing up from the still-frozen ground, are fresh, green shoots of chives.

Since the snow over my chives literally withdrew overnight, it is obvious that the plants had already put on new growth while still snow covered. And that is a great wonder of nature.

Later today, I plan on making a simple salad of lettuce, sprinkled with chopped-up chives. That makes chives the first green vegetable of the season, a real big deal for me.

On a similar note, the soil in some raised beds in my unheated greenhouse has thawed to the point that yesterday, I planted several rows of lettuce. The little greenhouse faces south and even on bitter-cold days, the temperature inside reaches a comfortable level as long as the sun shines.

So it has begun. The first garden vegetable, chives, has become available and the season’s first crop of salad greens is now in the ground and hopefully, well on the way toward germinating.

And soon, wild edible plants will come around and the foraging season will commence. It all thrills me to no end.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Promise becomes reality

Today, Sunday, March 6, the promise of spring became reality. Up until now, Nighttime temperatures around zero and cold, harsh daytime conditions made it seem as though winter would never loose its grip on us.

But last night remained above freezing and today, snow melts so rapidly that the decrease in depth is noticeable from one hour to the next.

As a diehard brook fisherman, with native brook trout as my chief goal, I live for opening day. And every year, it seems, the same thoughts assail me. “Will the snow and ice melt by April 1 so that we can go trout fishing?”

And every year, as if by magic, despite 10-foot snowbanks in early March, spring arrives and trout streams become ice-free. This year, hopefully, will not prove the exception.

Here’s something else to cheer the winter-weary soul. I have a cultivated pussy willow shrub in front of my house. And while much of it remains locked in snow and ice, some branches are now freed from their wintry prison and are sporting those silvery-gray catkins that make that simple plant a beloved symbol of springtime.

So be of good cheer. Spring is on the way. Really.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Roe Your Boat

Some friends asked me to accompany them last night on their smelt-fishing trip to the Kennebec River. Fish bit moderately well, giving us all enough smelt to satisfy our cravings.

As is their usual practice, my pals cleaned their fish in the ice shack prior to packing it in for the trip home. I followed suit but upon seeing that many of my smelt bulged with roe, it seemed wiser to wait until returning home to finish the chore. I wanted to make sure to save every little bit of roe and the dim light in the ice shack was insufficient for this.

Food prejudices come into play for many people who have not tried fried fish roe. Even calling it “caviar” fails to induce newbies to try a bite. Which is too bad, since roe has such a rich, sweet flavor.

Smelt roe excels not only because of its exquisite taste, but also on account of its fine texture. Other fish roe is certainly good tasting, but not all has such a fine texture, a desirable trait in fresh roe. Flounder roe comes in right along with smelt, but finding a store that offers it for sale seems an impossible task.

A long-ago fish market in Rockland used to sell flounder roe each spring and I bought lots of it. But the store is gone, as is the demand for flounder roe.

Which brings us back to smelt roe. My simple recipe calls for rolling the roes in flour and frying in olive oil or even butter until just browned. This treat tastes best when sprinkled with a bit of sea salt.

Smelt roe, one of those seasonal delicacies that I just can’t get enough of. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in experimenting with a new wild food.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Stranger In The Store

Sometimes, being known as a wild food addict puts me in an awkward position. For instance, I forgot to thaw out any of my frozen fish or lamb last night, which meant that unless I wanted to dine exclusively on canned goods (oh, yummy), I needed to go grocery shopping.

Even the most Euell-Gibbons-ish among us sometimes gets a craving for less-than-healthful foods. My downfall? Onion rings. I love those frozen onion rings that you heat up in a toaster oven. Healthful? No. Delicious? Yes.

Anyway, there I was strolling down the isle with a package of Italian sausage (also not exactly health food) and a bag of Hannaford’s frozen onion rings sitting in my basket for all the world to see. A man, whom I do not know, passed by, glanced at my basket and said, “I didn’t expect to see you here in a supermarket.”

I backtracked, equivocated and probably turned all kinds of shades of red.

“Ahem. Well,” I said, switching the basket to the other arm in order to obscure the identity of its contents. “I forgot to thaw anything out last night, so I needed to pick up a few things.”

The man smiled and walked off. I’m not sure he believed me.

Another incident sticks out in my memory, too. This happened several years ago. Again, with a basket laden with “forbidden fruit,” I rounded the isle and came face-to-face with a guy who obviously knew me.

Grinning, he said, “I won’t tell anybody if you won’t.”

With that, he walked off. And again, I was totally chagrined.

So there you have it. Yup. I live mostly off the land. But every so often I get a craving for onion rings, sausage and a number of other non-wild foods.

I feel much better having said this.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Seminar Schedule

It’s March 1, only 19 days to spring. Here’s an old English saying about the third month:
“A peck of March dust is worth a king’s ransom.”

Every so often, someone asks me when and where I will present my next foraging seminar. To that end, I’ll include regular updates here for those who might wish to attend.

As of now, I have the following, firm commitments:

1. March 12, Laudholm Farm, Wells, Maine. The York County Master Gardener’s Association has asked me to speak at their annual meeting. This will be after lunch, probably around 12:45. I’ll present a talk and DVD presentation all about wild edible plants that grow in cultivated soil.
2. April 3, Augusta Civic Center. I’ll put on a talk and DVD presentation at 3 p.m. as part of the Annual State of Maine Sportsman’s Show, hosted by The Maine Sportsman Magazine and Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine.
3. April 9, 11 a.m., Augusta Civic Center. I’ll give a talk, show a DVD and sign books as part of the Manchester Home and Garden show.
4. April 30, Gardiner adult education, exact place to be determined. I’ll present another picture/lecture and question-and-answer segment. For more info, call 582-3774.
5. May 14, Belfast. This also is a continuing part of my Gardiner adult Ed presentation and it will be a plant walk at locations around the Belfast Area. I’ll announce the time, although I suspect that it will begin around 10 a.m. Participants will meet at Reny’s Plaza, intersection of Routes 1 and 3 in Belfast.
6. May 19, 2 p.m., Dirigo Pines, Orono. I’ll put on a plant talk and include specimens and perhaps a DVD presentation.
7. July 7, Islesboro. I will put on a plant walk on the beach and also inland sections. Tentative time, 10 a.m. For more info, call Aaron Mcgquire at 734-6907. This is for Islesboro Land Trust.
8. July 24, 1:30, Holbrook Island State Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, Brooksville, Maine. I’ll present a wild plant walk around the old estate property, a woodland setting with lots of fields and edges, great for wild plants. We’ll conclude down at the shore. For more info, call Tammy, the park supervisor, at 326-4012. Holbrook is an unsung jewel in our park system…few visitors, gorgeous scenery. It even offers saltwater fishing and trout fishing on inland sections.
9. September 17, Greenville, Northern Resource Education Center, 10 a.m. I’ll present a wild plant talk and wild mushroom walk. Success of the mushroom walk depends upon availability, which in turn depends upon next season’s weather. For more info on this and other NREC events, call Sally at 280-0990.

That’s it for now. I’ll update these as the time draws near and add others as they come around.