Tom's Blog

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Winter work

So far this year things seem favorable for winter work. No significant snow and not too cold.

Most of the seeds are planted but Kathie still has some special species to get on the ground. Today she's planting yellow pimpernel, a fine savanna species that is not too common. We have a couple of native populations but fairly small, so we are trying to enhance the population. She is kicking the seeds in at the west end of Unit 10.

She also has purple milkweed seeds to plant, and these will probably go into the bur oak savanna. I'm trying to avoid areas where large populations of woodland sunflower might invade, as this species grows in such tight clones that nothing else can become established.

Another one she's planting is wood betony, a hemiparasite that plays an important role as a keystone species. Originally we just had it in a few spots, but through judicious planting we now have it in quite a lot of areas.

The main program for now is brush control. As long as snow is scarce we cut and treat or basal bark shrubs.

One important target are the numerous oak grubs, which we find not only in the savannas but also in those prairies in which there is a woody legacy. This is a good time to spot them as they still have their leaves. Basal bark with Garlon 4 in oil is the most efficient way to deal with them.


Blogger MLasecki said...

In the last paragraph you mention treating oak grubs. Why do you want to treat these in the savanna and prairie areas? Or is that just a typo?

Love following this blog by the way.

December 10, 2014 at 4:01 AM  

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