Field of Science

Longing for Spring

I know that I have only been back from the warm climate of Costa Rica for a couple of weeks, but I am already tired of winter. (This photo was taken from the top of a mountain on a beautiful day in Costa Rica.) Today in Connecticut it was icky, slushy, raininess with overcast skies. Thus I am looking forward to summer and am already planning a weekend vacation escape. A lot of people head to the beach but I am not a big fan of sand. I would much rather go where there are woods, great views, and fun hiking trails. My current vacation dream spot is Acadia National Park in Maine. I visited with my family about 10 years ago and I would love to go back. I have great memories of hiking and climbing the rocky trails. Also we got up early one morning and watched the sunrise from the top of Cadillac Mountain .
"It is said that, at some times of the year, the sun touches the slopes of Cadillac Mountain before any other place in the United States. At 1,530 feet, Cadillac is the highest point along the North Atlantic seaboard." From the National Park Service website.
The National Park Service also has a blurb under the Plants Section for Acadia National Park entitled Mosses and Liverworts. Here is what they had to say about our bryophyte pals that live in the park
"If you find a bog in Acadia National Park you are sure to see sphagnum (pronounced “sfagnum”) moss. Mosses, like ferns, reproduce by spores. However, mosses don’t have well-developed conductive tissue and therefore cannot move water and nutrients throughout their systems as effectively as ferns and other vascular plants. Because of this, mosses by necessity always grow in low mats in wet areas close to their nutrient source.
Sphagnum species are common and come in shades of green, red, and brown. Bog hummocks, which are small mounds of sphagnum, often form to create an undulating bog surface. Each species of sphagnum finds its own niche based on levels of soil moisture.Therefore, the species of sphagnum growing on the top of the hummocks are usually different from the ones growing between the hummocks!"

1 comment:

  1. I year ya Jess. My dad reports that in California the flowers are starting to emerge - which only makes me long for spring even harder. Acadia is definitely worth a visit - Sasha and I went once during winter too which was a different experience, but not great for moss hunting.


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