Friday, July 8, 2011

Button bush in the Midwood

Cephalanthus occidentalis

I got to know this pretty little tree in the BBG's native garden last summer, where it grows with its feet in a bog. It is hardy from zones 5-9, and is a good choice for damp spots in dappled shade or sun. 

I saw this one in the woods on Tuesday, as we met for Litter Mob 5. We were a tiny group - Inge, Olga and myself, but were given a boost by the presence of David's Youth Crew, who helped out before charging off in a truck. 

Jessica, another Natural Resources (Alliance) staff member, showed us how to put up temporay fencing for an area that is being trampled. Inge took a mattock to a compacted path. I cut and twisted wires and hammered in rebar

The woods were much cleaner in some areas. I'll post our fence-making, woodland-reclaiming pictures tomorrow.

To that end I have created a blog dedicated to the Litter Mob's activities: Previous litter posts have been copied and pasted there. Let me know if the layout looks weird, is too wordy...any feedback welcome.

All subsequent litter news will be posted there. Comments welcome. Additional authors sought. 

There's a new post there now.


  1. I know it must feel frustrating to do this work but you and your crew are wonderful!

  2. hi Marie, I'm hoping you have some Cape Town info for me - I'm going to be there in December, and would love to do a hike (your holiday posts had me hooked!). Is there somewhere online or in CT where I can get more info about possible trails?
    Thanks so much!

  3. Hi Anne - the work is not so bad in a sense, but the obfuscation is a pill. Merci.

    Hi Kirstey - yay! How long will you be there? There are so many trails. Are you walking with someone? I would not advise walking alone. regardless of weather remember water, and a warm jacket or windproof thingie.

    There are a lot of good local maps - the best ones are made by Slingsby (if you disregard the awful font they use on the cover!), and there are fold out maps for Table Mountain, Silvermine, Cape Point, each of which has dozens of trails.

    I think I may send you on a Silvermine hike that takes you up through the fynbos to a stunning view point looking down over the blue Hout Bay. It's about 4 hours.

    There are many shorter hikes, too, as well as long ones. The Hoerikwaggo trail takes you down the spine of mountains on the peninsula and the whole thing is 4 or 5 nights, staying in huts along the way or you can pick just a couple of stops.

    Check out all my hikes (though you may have) for ideas:

  4. Marie, Here in Wisconsin the State posts sign saying, "This area cared for by:..." I think when people realize someone is coming along and cleaning up after them on a volunteer basis and cares about the antural beauty, it cuts down on the random acts of littering. It also give some recognition for the good work you are doing.

    Perhaps NYC, etc. could initiate such a program?

  5. Hi Rachelle - I have seen that on highways here. Actually you remind me to take a picture of a nearby one...wait and see.

    I think the Parks may be different, but we are thinking about how to involve the men who use this area by leaving polite little notes or signs at what we call hot spots...

  6. thanks for that info! I will do some looking around at the links. I'm going for a week (can't wait!) and will be with my hubby, my parents and his mom... not sure what everyone will be up for, but the 4 hour hike sounds fantastic. Thank you!K

  7. Wow, that's a serious looking crew -they got t-shirts!

    Sorry I missed the rebar, I'm ok with a 5 lb sledge.

    next time.

  8. There's one down by the lake, but not yet in bloom. Its feet are in the water.

  9. Frank - Inge was swinging a mattock (and I thought it was a pick ax) that was as large as herself, and dug up an entire path. I have this nice picture of rain sinking in, now, rather than running off. The fence is not pretty but will serve to let the main maze of paths rehabilitate (with goutweed!!!) You'll see.

    Ellen - a nice, swampy plant...


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