It is my mission to visit all the land trusts in and around Syracuse. In order to teach myself the native flora I will be photographing and keeping record of where I find plants, and when they are blooming. This week I was able to visit Rand Tract Bird Sanctuary. I was hoping to find some trilliums, and a maybe a dicentra or two. I was lucky and found many Trillium grandiflorum, a small patch of Dicentra canadensis, and a few other surprises.
This was my first visit to the 97 acre preserve, the weather was intermittent with rain and clouds, and it felt cozy with a layer of humidity wrapped around me. When I started out I saw vinca vine, garlic mustard, and some other unpleasant non-native species. I decided to take the trail uphill in search of something in bloom. My eyes focused in on a hillside speckled with blooming trilliums. While I was searching for more, I almost missed some Arisaema triphyllum, or jack-in-the-pulpit, blooming right underfoot. There were also large patches of non-blooming Podophyllum peltatum,and Caulophyllum thalictroides scattered about the forest.
I’m hoping to revisit Rand Tract in the near future and catch the Hepatica and Allium in bloom. Something I didn’t expect to see was a small Sambucus racemosa, growing out of moss-covered boulders. I missed earlier blossoms, as only the leaves and fruit were left on the Sanguinaria canadensis.