This is a magical season in the forest, as the spring ephemerals are just beginning to bloom. When we think of forest, our minds immediately go to the trees. Right now, with the trees in various stages of budding out, there is not a leaf to be seen. But there is a whole rainbow of color to be found.
Lots of life is beginning to emerge from the ground. Wildflowers of Iowa Woodlands by Sylvan Runkel and Alvin Bull is a great resource to put in your backpack before setting out. If that’s too big, try the laminated Woodland in Your Pocket pamphlet. Finding flowers is fun: knowing what you’re looking at is thrilling.
Delicate, small forbs take advantage of all of that sunlight streaming through the bare branches to send up their own leaves, flower, and reproduce.
To help identify feathers you find, visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s free online Feather Atlas.
Spend Earth Day outside, exploring what is happening with the earth as spring surrounds us in a rainbow of color. What colors will you find?