After a slow first five months, I'm back to blogging in earnest. In the forthcoming few months I plan to keep on tracking the blooming of wildflowers, the activities of bugs and reptiles and any other critters I'm quick enough or lucky enough to photograph, and to comment on ecological relationships. Since there is an increasing sense of ecological crisis among many people and more vigorous denial of such on the part of others, I will inevitably comment on the social and political dimensions of survival as I see them.
I am still an adjunct instructor in the English Department at Feather River College, but time permitting, I am available for hire as a nature guide in the region in and around Plumas County. A brochure describing my usual kinds of natural history adventures is in development. Email me c/o firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing address and a statement of interests, and I'll send you a rough draft.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
When someone points to either of these common roadside plants and says, "It's just a weed," I get as perturbed as I do when a person says, "Evolution is just a theory." That word "just" is meant to be dismissive and to render the subject unimportant or even evil. Click on each of these photos for a close-up look. I defy you not to see them as beautiful. The top photo is a common roadside member of the mint family called Henbit Dead Nettle. The shape of the flower as well as the square cross-section of the stem are clues that it's a mint. I'm seeing them at the side of the road leading into Feather River College as well as at the edges of most of the roads around American Valley and on Highway 89 all the way to Greenville.
The second photo is of Filaree of which there are several native and non-native species in California. It is sometimes called Storkbill. It's always one of the first flowers to bloom in the spring. I hope I have time tomorrow to report on further details of yesterday's and today's photography excursions. Today's findings include Elegant Rock Cress by the Greenville Y, Dusky Horkelia on the Old Keddie Highway leading to the Keddie Cascades trailhead, and Milkmaids on the property of a new friend just east of Greenville. The weekend was too short!!!