From the forest floor

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Todays post is brought to you courtesy of the forest floor. A place to discover wonders both large and small.  Like the sculptural beauty of a leaf  slowly working its way back to soil.

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and a pine cone in all its’ glory.

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So much to see in a 8 inch square.

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yes, so much to see on the forest floor.

Sagebrush Buttercups: Ranunculus glaberrimus

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Just down the road, where the sun hits just right, is a small patch of earth warmed by the sun where the snow has melted and the Sagebrush Buttercups are already springing to life.

Growing low to the ground with their buttery shiny-waxy petals these wonderful little flowers are a challenge to photograph yet fun nonetheless. They are a bit poisonous to the touch so take care if handling them as they can cause blistering.

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While a few were blooming most we still just on their way.

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A wonderful sign that spring is indeed on it’s way despite the recent snows.

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Like fingers

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A wonderful and unusual fungus growing like fingers from the earth along the path of  old tree decomposing lying just below the earths surface.

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There were several cluster each with a wonderful beauty that made us ponder life myriad forms. Each form with a place and each important to the whole.

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The diversity of life is natures greatest gift.

On the forest floor

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After a mile or two of a hike that began in tall grassland and meadows we suddenly entered a stretch of trail that wound it’s way through a luxuriant forest filled with treasures of all kind. From beautiful Woodland Pinedrops to what seemed an unending variety of ground covers, the landscape was transformed. From dry to wet, from brown to green, you never know what you’ll find on the forest floor.

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Unusual fungi and tiny white bells.

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Life took many forms and all play a part in the ecosystem of the forest floor.

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Wishing you a wonderful weekend and some time to explore.

Pipsissewa:Chimaphila umbellata

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Pipisissewa is a beautiful and distinct wildflower found on the forest floor not to mention a fun name to say. With its long stem and single umbrella shaped flower it is  hard to miss while hiking through the woods and native to much of cool temperate forest across the northern hemisphere. A member of the wintergreen family Pipsissewa has green leaves year-round, it receives a significant portion of its nutrition from fungi in the soil.

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Pipsissewa, as much fun to observe as it is to say and wonderful companion on any forested walk.