Here I’ll be sharing some photographs I’ve recently taken as well as some of my favorites from my forthcoming book Naturally Curious. I’ll be updating my blog periodically with new images, new stories, and more glimpses of New England in all seasons.
SPECKLED ALDER IN FLOWER
This member of the Birch family is found in wet areas and can easily be identified by the horizontal lines, or lenticels, on its bark (through which gases are exchanged). Both male and female flowers occur on this shrub, in the form of catkins. As the spring progresses, long before leaves appear, the larger male catkins expand, revealing yellow pollen which is dispersed by the wind. Above the pendant male flowers are tiny,maroon female flowers. Most wind-pollinated trees and shrubs flower before the leaves are out so as to facilitate the dispersal of their pollen.