Tom's Blog

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Exploring our wetlands with Ted Cochrane

Ted Cochrane is the local expert on the Wisconsin flora. He has been co-author on two important books, one the Atlas of Wisconsin Prairie and Savanna Plants and the other a Checklist of the Wisconsin Flora. He has also written a colorful and entertaining book on wildflowers of the U.W. Madison Arboretum.

Ted is Senior Curator at the U.W. Madison Herbarium and is one of the guiding spirits behind that organization's great web site.

Yesterday Kathie and I were able to capture Ted at a fleeting moment for an extensive tour of our wetland. Some of the most difficult plants we have to identify are the wetland sedges and grasses, and Ted is superb at spotting these and putting names on them.

Our foray was a little damp, as we were still feeling a bit of effect from the heavy rain storms of earlier in June. But the plants had bounced back quickly from being flooded, and were flourishing. We were able to cover quite a bit of territory and our species check list for Pleasant Valley Conservancy grew a bit.

In all, a great day!


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