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Fred's photos from Wheaton Labs

 
gardener
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Location: Wheaton Labs, MT and Tularosa, NM
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Two big snowfalls the last few days.

The night of Nov. 28th there wasn't any snow in the forecast. When i was ready to leave basecamp it had already snowed a few inches and then it snowed a couple more by morning. The first photo is from the 29th when i measured 5.25 inches of snow from that night's storm.

Yesterday there was snow forecast and it continued into this morning. I measured 10.25 inches this afternoon when the snow finally let up. I'm pretty sure my snow measuring stump exceeded its capacity. It probably snowed a bit more, but it fell off the sides of the pile on the stump.

It makes everything so pretty...and quiet.

The last photo is of the gate towards Ant Village at the Abbey.
5.25-inches-snow.jpg
5.25 inches on Nov 28th
5.25 inches on Nov 28th
10.25-inches-snow.jpg
10.25 inches on Nov 30th and Dec 1st
10.25 inches on Nov 30th and Dec 1st
ant-village-gate.jpg
Ant Village gate at Allerton Abbey
Ant Village gate at Allerton Abbey
 
Fred Tyler
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A few days ago, as i was heading home, i saw many elk tracks in the snow on the road up on the lab. I had a silly sleepy thought that i would take pictures of them the next morning. Well, there was a few inches of snow to hide those tracks and no pictures, as a result. Not to worry, because my game cam caught a bunch of elk passing through my plot in the middle of the night.
elk.jpg
One elk on the road, one in the woods
One elk on the road, one in the woods
elk.jpg
Two elk on the road
Two elk on the road
elk.jpg
One big elk on the road
One big elk on the road
elk.jpg
Another big guy some minutes later
Another big guy some minutes later
 
Fred Tyler
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Here's some photos after that last big snowfall.

The first photo is of a yellow dock seed stalk being weighed down by snow.

The second photo is of some mullein that has caught some snow in its crown.

The third photo is looking towards the teepee gate from the abbey

The fourth photo is of the greenhouse. The snow started to melt off the glass, but i helped it along with a broom so a little more sunshine could get inside.
yellow-dock.jpg
Yellow dock with snow
Yellow dock with snow
mullein.jpg
Mullein with snow
Mullein with snow
towards-teepee-gate.jpg
Towards teepee gate
Towards teepee gate
wofati-greenhouse.jpg
Wofati greenhouse with snow
Wofati greenhouse with snow
 
Fred Tyler
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On my plot i found a couple of trees with the bark scraped off. Not sure if this was deer or elk, but this probably happened when one of the males was scraping the velvet from their antlers. Some trees will recover from the bark injury and some will not.

As i was walking around the lab, every few feet on top of the snow i saw a snowfly. These are wingless flies from the genus Chionea. Very little is known about them. It is believed they walk on the snow surface to find a mate. It is assumed that the adults don't eat, but no one is sure, because they spend much of their time in the subnivean layer (under the snow). They seem to have lost their wings as they use too much energy in the winter (which is when the adults are active).
bark-scraping.jpg
Bark scraping
Bark scraping
bark-scraping.jpg
Bark scraping
Bark scraping
wingless-snowfly-genus-chionea.jpg
 Wingless snowfly from the genus Chionea
Wingless snowfly from the genus Chionea
 
Fred Tyler
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Location: Wheaton Labs, MT and Tularosa, NM
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I have been excitedly watching these flower buds grow bigger, but i won't be around to see them bloom. These started out as one or two leaves from other peoples plants. It took a few years, but they are big enough that they decided to bloom.

The first photo is of the thanksgiving cactus (Schlumbergera truncata). These flower buds did appear a bit before the others. Maybe they will open up first...even though they missed thanksgiving.

The other photos are of a couple of christmas cacti (Schlumbergera russelliana).

I have another one which may be an easter cactus (Schlumbergera gaertneri), but after a mishap, it is just a couple of small leaves and not trying to bloom.

Edit: There's been a lot of name changes to both the genera and species of these plants, and a fair bit of misspelling on the internet. Many plants getting passed around may, in fact, be hybrids. So, without genetic testing, these guesses are as good as i can do.
thanksgiving-cactus-schlumbergera-truncata.jpg
 thanksgiving cactus (Schlumbergera truncata)
thanksgiving cactus (Schlumbergera truncata)
christmas-cactus-schlumbergera-russelliana.jpg
christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana)
christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana)
christmas-cactus-schlumbergera-russelliana.jpg
christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana)
christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana)
christmas-cactus-schlumbergera-russelliana.jpg
christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana)
christmas cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana)
 
pollinator
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I love that flowering cactus! I have two different kinds (I think they're all one species ...). One with almost white (very light pink) flowers, blooming November/December (right now), the other bright pink about a month later (buds are starting to come now). I took some cuttings of both, don't know yet if those will grow. I never name them after one of those 'holidays'. They're just Schlumbergera or, in Dutch, 'lidcactus'.
 
Fred Tyler
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Inge Leonora-den Ouden wrote:I love that flowering cactus! I have two different kinds (I think they're all one species ...). One with almost white (very light pink) flowers, blooming November/December (right now), the other bright pink about a month later (buds are starting to come now). I took some cuttings of both, don't know yet if those will grow. I never name them after one of those 'holidays'. They're just Schlumbergera or, in Dutch, 'lidcactus'.



Inge, i like the idea of dropping the holiday names. Turns out, some people call them "link cactus" or "chain cactus". The species can be differentiated by leaf shape and flower shape. Flower color, however, can vary depending on temperature during bud formation, and iron availability. Good luck with your cuttings.
 
steward
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Fred.

How would you feel about inoculating logs on your plot during the PTJ this year?  Maybe some other stuff, too.
 
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