We had our annual roadside cleanup.
We had, I think, twelve people to cover the road that (almost) encircles the lake, about two-and-a-half miles.
Bad blogger that I am, I got no pictures of the hard-working pickers. But I did get pictures of the trash.
When we gathered, one of the guys reminded us to watch for morels, which are apparently sprouting right about now. "Look for an elm tree," he said. "They are growing up the side of elm trees."
Okay. But I didn't think we even HAD elm trees here. Not surprisingly, I saw zero morels. Neither did anyone else, as far as I know.
But I did discover a bunch of jack-in-the-pulpit, something I had never seen growing wild in the this area.
I also saw a lot of maidenhair ferns (sorry, no photos), something else that I didn't think grew wild here. I have seen a rare few but nothing like today. Apparently the soil on the other side of the lake, where I saw the jacks and ferns, is limier than our side.
The wild strawberries are in bloom.
They grow everywhere along the road. If we get a decent amount of rain they are delicious -- tiny, but yummy. If we don't get enough rain they are very tiny, more seed than fruit.
Of course the trillium are blooming.
Some years the forest floor is covered with them, but not this year. In my extremely limited experience, they seem to bloom best after a horrendous winter with severe ice storms. The past winter had plenty of snow cover and not too much ice, so spring brought a more modest crop of trillium
I had help for part of the walk.
"Here, Spartacus! C'mere, boy!"
Spartacus is the morel guy's dog. He looks fierce and has a scary bark, but his tail was wagging pretty hard today. I didn't bring our dogs -- Bear is too old for such a long walk and Lucy runs away unless she is on a leash. So they stayed home and napped.
I thought these were bloodroot -- something else I didn't think grew here -- but googling makes me think they are not.
I shall have to go back with my Newcomb's Wildflower Guide later today. It employs the accountant's method of wildflower identification: count the leaves, count the petals, look for certain other specific details, then find it in the book.
ETA: The mysterious white flowers are wood anemone, A. quinquefolia.
We are in a drought here. There is a 20-inch rain deficit over the past three years a bit farther north and east of here. We only get 25-30 inches of rain a year on average, so that is a lot. The lake levels are low. This is a tiny bay across the lake from us.
A couple signs for your enjoyment.