Friday, January 07, 2011

Walking Along Waterfalls

Friday, January 7, 2011

4 PM is already here with a dullness that suggests tonight's coming snowstorm. It's not predicted to be very big, perhaps 4", but the weather folks say light snow will continue this weekend. Locations closer to the New England coast may well receive more snow but that's all for us. It has been a strange winter so far, quite cold and windy with really very little snow here to speak of. I have put on the plow only one time and that really was at the pleasure of Christmas guests.

Vermont is a beautiful state and I really wish I had more time in the summer to get out and enjoy it. Operating a nursery and trying to keep employees to a minimum puts a damper on free time to get out and about. Up top here is a picture of local Marshfield Falls, purported to be one of Vermont's longer waterfalls. The falls is easy to find, is located in Marshfield village and just 2/10's mile off US Route 2. Although the main falls pictured here is about 100 feet long, the entire falls from where it tips downhill at the top of the mountain to where it joins the Winooski River at the bottom is over 600 feet. If you're passing through town, it's worth stopping for a few minutes. It's visible from the road all year long.Turn of Route 2 at Rainbow Sweets and go straight. Bear right where the road forks if you want to park and visit for a bit.

This summer a customer's plant question led me to a web search which led to mention of Cheever Falls, 15 miles away in Walden, Vermont. Just reading about Cheever falls got me interested and along the way I heard about New England Waterfalls by Greg Parsons and Kate Watson.They had published a similar book years previous that described the location for 200 waterfalls but this revised edition discusses 400 waterfalls. Cheever and Marshfield Falls are both mentioned.

As a gardener I enjoy getting out and walking along rivers as there are many botanical surprises to be found. This holds true of river banks with adjacent waterfalls. The humidity of the land adjacent to the falls always provides a perfect place for certain plants to prosper. I have found buttercups, moneywort , jewelweed, Jack in the pulpits, cattail, Japanese knotweed, baneberry, Jerusalem artichoke, yellow flag, trout lilies, orchids, Indian cucumber root, clintonia, marsh marigold, black eyed Susans, forget-me-not, meadow rue, baneberry, turtlehead, Dutchman's britches, wild sarsaparilla, Canada lilies, trillium, cardinal flower, loosestrife and Lilium superbum. There are many more as well as ferns, mosses and lichens in quantity to keep any would-be botanist busy.

Today it's too cold for me to be climbing around waterfalls but for next spring through fall, test your scouting skills and find a few waterfalls. There's probably at least one nice one close to your home.

Writing from the mountain above Peacham Pond where the wind has died and the light is almost gone. Time to bring in some wood for tonight.

George Africa
The Vermont Gardener
Vermont Flower Farm
Social Networking Works!
On Facebook at Vermont Flower Farm and Gardens and also as George Africa
On Twitter as

No comments: