So VDOT got a late start on this project, supposed to have begun last Monday. (And work will NOT be finished until at least July 22 or 23.) The foreman realized how bad things really were, and instead of the single pipe with a 4 inch concrete cap, he decided this replacement needed two pipes and an 8 inch cap. You can see they’ve dammed the creek upstream and are sending the water via a large-diameter flexible hose–like a firehose–back into the creek bed …

An Even Slower Road Home Read more »

The repairs for which the road residents were first given a heads-up for completion in October of last year (after Hurricane Michael removed most of Goose Creek) is finally happening this week. And since October we’ve been driving through water, in and out of the valley here, with wheel rims and brakes staying wet and rusty now for more than a half-year. The culvert under the concrete (poured in the early 70s) had filled with debris and could not be cleaned out. The concrete …

Can’t Get There from Here Read more »

We rounded the bend on Griffith Creek last week to find a hundred yards of creekside lined thickly with a flat-topped pink-flowered shrub I recognized as Spirea, a member of the rose family. But the members of the genus I was familiar with are knee-high wildflowers, not shrubs. And seeing the extent of this population, I suspected it was spreading without threat of disease or predators, because it was “not from these parts.” I sometimes wish I did not notice the invasives that are …

What Native Plants? Read more »

I’d never seen a horntail wasp until I saw this one last week, but knew at a glance what it was. Note the horn on the tail, just above its rather short, stout ovipositor. It is NOT a stinger. And so now, I have familiarity with both the predator and the prey. How they interact is truly amazing, and a story I had known about for decades. This short video below shows excellent details of the Ichneumonid’s remarkable way of getting its egg onto …

(extra)Ordinary Nearby Nature Read more »

No MegaGlobalCorp will make billionaires in doing so, but it is perhaps the most effective and achievable intervention in the near term to take carbon out of the air–Plant a trillion trees, per this AP piece by Seth Borenstein: “… there’s enough room, Swiss scientists say. Even with existing cities and farmland, there’s enough space for new trees to cover 3.5 million square miles (9 million square kilometers), they reported in Thursday’s journal Science. That area is roughly the size of the United States. …

The Best Time… Read more »