Located on South St. (Rt. 1A) directly behind town hall, Clarence Telford Park is a popular spot for outdoor recreation.
Depending on the time of year, children and adults can be found playing soccer, shooting hoops, swimming in the town's pool, and playing in the jungle gym. In addition, the park contains a section of the Ten Mile River, which passes through two small ponds (the larger of which is named Plainville Pond). These waterways provide ample opportunities for fishing and wildlife viewing. Continue reading Exploring Plainville: Telford Park→
Red Maple (Acer rubrum) -- perhaps the most common native maple in Plainville -- grows in a variety of habitats, most notably in swamps. Like all maples, it has leaves arranged in pairs along its twigs.
The leaves of Red Maple average smaller than most other maples, and typically feature only three lobes. The undersides are pale green to white.
Red Maples flower early in the year, before most other trees show any signs of new growth. In the fall, swamps light up with the red foliage of this tree.
Next, we'll look at the introduced Sycamore Maple (Acer pseudoplatanus).
In its native range, Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum) grows mostly along rivers and streams. Where I live, in eastern Massachusetts, they are mostly found as planted trees near human habitation. With leaves featuring deeply cut sinuses and silvery undersides, Silver Maple is notably different from both Sugar and Norway Maple.
Silver Maples flower in late winter or early spring, and seeds ripen and fall soon after. In my neighborhood, fresh seeds are eaten by squirrels and chipmunks.
The trees often have long hanging branches, which are vulnerable to storm damage. The bark of older trees is gray and splits into long strips.
Next in this series will be the common maple of local swamps: Red Maple (Acer rubrum).
While walking the roads of Plainville this week, I encountered several patches of Blue Huckleberries (Gaylussacia frondosa). They resemble wild blueberries, but they have crunchy seeds (ten to be exact) and a flavor all their own.
Black Huckleberry is similar, but different. Here is a photo comparing fruit clusters of each.