As the green season gives way to the white season, new mysteries appear on the natural landscape. My latest nature activity encourages you to seek out some of these seasonal signs, even as air temperatures plummet. Dress warmly and have fun! Download Activity #9: Scavenger Hunt (Nov/Dec/Jan) or another Nature Activity for free today.
Red Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) is an evergreen subshrub of mountaintops, rocky outcrops, grasslands, and sandy sites and grows wild in northern parts of Europe, Asia, and North America. The shrub’s leaves are thick and shiny, about 1″ long, and widest near the tip. The sprawling stems are noticeably fuzzy, and, with the use of a hand lens or loupe, fine hairs are also visible on the margins of young leaves. Continue reading
Last week, I made a brief visit to a conservation property that is home to Pitch Pine, Common Lowbush Blueberry, Scrub Oak, Pin Cherry, Sweet-fern, and many other grassland and pine barren plant species. Along one trail, I noticed sprawling communities of today’s mystery plant. Some of the leafy mats even had red fruit. Name this evergreen subshrub. (Photographed in Wells, ME on November 12, 2014.)
Click here for the answer.
A week ago, I found a partial skeleton of a mammal on a rocky shore in Biddeford, ME. The skull was damaged and missing some teeth, and I could only locate half of the mandible (lower jaw), but I decided to take some time to determine what kind of mammal had died. Continue reading