Solitary Walnut – over time

This is my new favorite phenology spot.  I’m now capturing this solitary walnut tree, which is located on the drive into Bernheim, on a regular basis.  These two shots were, respectively, September 12 and October 3rd, 2014.  I still have much love for my older photographic subjects but I really like the way these shots capture the tree, the grassland, and the tree line in the distance.  I’m hoping there is a good bit of information that will be captured here that might be used in some way in the future.  And I can’t wait to see this tree through the winter months.  This has been one of the highest mast production years in memory.  The walnuts, persimmons, pecans, hickories, dogwoods, oaks and others have been pumping out the fruit/seeds this year.  Fecund.

IMG_4570IMG_4940 - Version 2

Mei Ling Hom – Dit Dit Dash

The current artist-in-residence at Bernheim is Mei Ling Hom. Her web page is HERE.  She’s currently working on a sculpture that will be set up in the Edible Garden along a sweeping walkway that goes from the arbor to the raised growing beds.  It involves creating around 50 individual “dits” and “dahs” that make up Morse Code. Each “dit” will be filled with soil and planted with a lavender plant.  Each “dah” will be planted with a row of European garlic.  The roots of the plants will be inoculated with Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi which will form a relationship with the plant that, in theory, will allow the plants to grow better than they would without the fungi.  As the sculptural piece rots over time they will leave the soil beneath them in better shape than before.  This concept of regenerative design is part of the larger garden design considerations.  Here’s some pictures of the pieces in production.  I’ll post pictures of the sculpture in place later.  Mei Ling’s partner, Dave, is instrument in all of this happening.
Meiling - Creating a dit
Dave and Meiling working 3-11-14

Meiling - dit and dah

Bud watching 2014

As is my custom (actually addiction) I’ve got my eyes on a short list of plants and vistas that I follow closely in the spring.  Here’s two photos of the buds on two of my index trees.  Both are at Bernheim.  The first is a butternut (Juglans cineria) and the second is an Ohio buckeye (Aesculus glabra).  I take frequent pictures of both of these as I track the timing of their development each year. These pictures were taken on 3-14-14.

Juglans cineria 3-14-14 (Bernheim)

Juglans cineria 3-14-14 (Bernheim)


Aesculus glabra 3-14-14 (Bernheim)

Aesculus glabra 3-14-14 (Bernheim)

2013 Children at Play Conference – Oct 4/5

I know that the readers of this blog are few. And I know that the few are not close. But… Next Friday and Saturday is the first Children at Play Conference at Bernheim (near Louisville Kentucky). I’ve been pulling the larger Children at Play Initiative that this conference kicks off for over a year. This is the start of an on-going effort to reinvent the universe of outdoor play spaces in my region. I know, in my bones, that this community will become a hot-spot for the most amazing outdoor play environments to be found. With a bit of help we will simply make it so. If you want to find out more about the upcoming conference simply click HERE.CAP13 Promo

Wilson Creek Field Trip

On the new Wilson Creek beaver dam trail.

On the new Wilson Creek beaver dam trail.

On Friday, June 14th some Bernheim staff with their family members in tow took a field trip along a newly created trail at Wilson Creek. Beaver have been active on the creek and we saw newly engineered dams, lodges, beaver footprints (the beaver were hiding) and lots of other cool stuff. When I leave for work Ruby says “Are you gonna go help nature today daddy?” Yup. Here’s some shots of Ruby learning her “nature chops”.
Checking out a turtle nest.  They hatched!

Checking out a turtle nest. They hatched!


Looking at beaver footprints.

Looking at beaver footprints.


Inspecting a wild garlic scape.

Inspecting a wild garlic scape.


Checking out progress on Matt's Earth Measure sculpture.

Checking out progress on Matt’s Earth Measure sculpture.