April 2022 Nature Journal

Creeping Phlox (Phlox stolonifera)
Creeping Phlox (Phlox stolonifera) blooming during Pink Moon in my garden.

Creeping Phlox Moon and Invasives

April 2022 Nature Journal. April flew by. Spring made it’s arrival known with bright sunny days long photoperiods, wind, and rain. April’s moon, the Pink Moon, gets its name from the lovely magenta pink of the Creeping Phlox. The phlox bloomed right on time at the bottom of my backyard garden. It is useful as an indicator plant. See also Algonquin Moon Names

In my garden, the Shadbush is succumbing to Apple Cedar Rust.  Only about 5% of the tree had bloom and flowers. The tiny new leaves have a sickly rusty color. I don’t think it will last past this year. I am already thinking what indigenous tree I will plant to replace it.

I volunteered in the native plant garden at the Schuylkill Center. Purple Cordalis was blooming everywhere in the garden. What we couldn’t uproot and toss, we clipped off the blossoms before they set and scattered their seeds. Trying to keep an indigenous plant garden is a long battle. against invasives.

There seems to be an never ending source of invasive plants which invade and proliferate. I see pretty magenta and purple Morning Glory seeds in the store and would love to plant them but I know they will become invasive and swallow my garden and those of my neighbors. Morning Glories really take off in my area. So, no Morning Glories for me. See also Why Native Plants?

Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica)
Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica) blooming in my garden.

My Habitat Garden

The Virginia Bluebells put on a spectacular showing in my back garden. The blue color is indescribable. I wish I could bottle the color as a perfume. I then it would be a fresh and heady scent that draws you nearer to the person wearing it.

A Cabbage White butterfly was ‘tasting’ kale leaves with her feet. She was sensing what plants to lay her eggs on. Vegetables in the Brassica or Cole family are host plants for Cabbage Whites. These are the caterpillars or cabbage worms that put holes in your cole crops.

The spiders are awake and out and about. Perhaps, I’ll spot new species in my garden.

Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) drumming.
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) drumming and calling.

BioBlitz at Alverthorpe Park

I participated in BioBlitz at Abington Township’s Alverthorpe Park. I used the iNaturalist app to collect data on the species along the stream monitored by the Tacony-Tookany Frankford Watershed organization (Disclaimer: I am on the Board of Directors).

I photographed plants, arthropods, water life, birds, etc. And uploaded my sightings on the iNaturalist app. This data will be used by TTF staff environmentalists to gauge the health of waterways and how effective the restoration efforts have been.

The highlight of my day was listening a awatching a Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) call and drum.  A fellow birder told me there were rumors of a Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus) in the park. Loud drumming that rang out across the park was the source fo the rumour. But that is how I found the Northern Flicker, I followed the sound of the very loud drumming from one side of the park to the other. No Pileated, but a dedicated Fliker. About Citizen Science and Nature Journal Keeping

Wissahickon Valley Park
Wissahickon Valley Park in the Piedmont Plateau region of Philadelphia.

Birding in the Wissahickon Valley Park

I went on a Bird Walk with In Color Birding. We saw about 25 birds. The highlights were Eastern Phoebes, and two lifers for me, a Merlin and a Ruby-crowned Kinglet. I couldn’t believe I didn’t have these two birds on my life list.

Our group use a collective life list using eBird. One kind soul logs in the birds we see then shares the list with the group through email. Then I enter the birds in my life list.

A life list is the catalog of birds seen or heard by a birder. I bought the National Geographic Birder’s Journal a long time ago, July 2007. Each bird walk I check off any ‘lifers’. Birds seen for the first time. There are several life list available for purchase. I think I need to write a post about keeping a life list. In the meantime here are a few Birder’s Journals on Amazon.com. The following are affiliate links that earn a commission that supports this blog.

Birder’s Life List and Journal (Cornell Lab of Ornithology)

The Sibley Birder’s Life List and Field Journal

 

 Bleeding Hearts (Dicentra eximia)
Bleeding Hearts (Dicentra eximia) blooming in my garden.

The Pleiades (The Natural Calendar)

The Pleiades will be disappearing from the spring sky soon. They won’t reappear until August to let us know autumn is near and plant your fall crops. The stars disappear again to reappear close to first autumn frosts.

May Day or Beltane will be May 1st. Celtic Calendar Days.

 

Related Posts to April 2022 Nature Journal

April 2022 Nature Almanac

Spring 2021 Nature Journal 

The Spring Nature Journal

That’s it for my April 2022 Nature Journal. May’s moon is the Flower Moon which brings and explosion of spring flowers. Until next month, enjoy the spring bird migration. May you see many new warblers.

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