It’s About Time

By: Susan Sprout

How do you personally mark the passage of time? By the day, week, or month? By the seasons? By special family projects, events, or birthdays? From one Earth Day to another? No matter how you measured, Spring 2020 to Spring 2021 was an unusual year. For me, the time this year swelled and compressed from periods of inactivity to hyperactivity as it passed, slowing down indoors and speeding up near a deadline. Besides making music with my friends, one thing that kept me functioning and moderately sane, were  plants…those super wonderful plants that grabbed my attention on walks and hikes and forest rambles…the ones I photographed, researched and shared with you weekly. Now, many of them are already popping forth from their winter quarters and beginning to bloom! Wow! That was a quick year!

OK, maybe looking backwards!

A collection of some of the plant’s from the Underfoot series shared throughout the past year!

However, looking forward, please think about using native plants and trees in your yard and garden. Did you know that they have evolved over millions of years here and have specific habitat niches? Many have specific mycorrhizal partners in the soil that can more easily take minerals from underground and make them available to plants’ roots. They can then pass on the energy created in their leaves to the insects with which they share an evolutionary history. These insects are food for other native insects, spiders, birds, amphibians, reptiles, mammals. Feed our native wildlife with food plants that they can metabolize. Recharge the food web in your yard! We will all be glad you did!

Find out what’s underfoot with NPC member and environmental educator, Susan Sprout!

Underfoot Directory
Introduction & BloodrootTrout Lily & ColtsfootBlue Cohosh & Dutchman’s BreechesGround Ivy & Forget-Me-NotsGoldthread & Wild GingerCommon Mullein & Sweet WoodruffAniseroot & Butterfly WeedMyself Jewelweed & SoapwortAmerican Pennyroyal & Great LobeliaBoneset & Common RagweedPokeweed & Blue ChicoryPrickly Cucumber & WintergreenBeech Drops & Partridge BerryPipsissewa & NostocWitch HazelPlantsgivingBlack Jetbead & Decorating with WinterberryWild Bergamot & Bald Cypress TreeGalls & BittersweetAmerican Beech & BagwormSeedpods & American ChestnutNorthern Bayberry & Sweet FernBroom-sedge & Common Motherswort, Snow Drops.