2022 Outings – Friends of CMH
In 2022, a small group of volunteers from the Connell Memorial Herbarium made some botanical explorations. These outings were usually spontaneous – from a need to get outside to discover and re-discover our native plants. The first outing was May 25th to Tower Lake, a small boggy area close to Fredericton. In the collection, there are 12 specimens of the Virginia Chain Fern (Woodwardia virginica) of which two were collected near Tower Lake. As some of the volunteers have never seen this fern in NB we ventured out to re-locate the plant. The herbarium specimens, collected in 1977, had vague descriptions for the location (N. Side of Tower Lake) and unfortunately, after a long day of wading through a boggy habitat, we did not find it. We were blessed, however, with large swaths of Rhodora (Rhododendron canadense), in full bloom.
Our second outing on June 11th, was to the Fred Tribe Forest near Lower Royalton. It is a preserve of the Nature Trust of NB and is now called the Sasokatokuk Nature Preserve. It is 90 acres of Appalachian Hardwood Forest with some calcareous cedar fen and abandoned farmland. A visit to the rich hardwoods forests of NB is always lovely – and we were not disappointed. Goldie’s fern (Dryopteris goldiana), Maidenhair fern (Adiantum pedatum), Silvery spleenwort fern (Deparia acrostichoides) and Blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides) were in abundance.
The third site for a botany outing was the Lincoln Trail that runs from Hwy 102 near the Fredericton airport to the Saint John River. The property is co-owned by the Lincoln Elementary School and the Nature Conservancy of Canada. This site was chosen by Gart Bishop because of its rich wetland and stands of Basswood and Butternut. A botanical survey has not been undertaken and thus with the permission of the Nature Conservancy, volunteers collected and documented the vegetation on two dates, July 9th and August 6th. This study will be continued in 2023.
Our final outing was a relaxing botanical foray along the Schribner Brook in the Oromocto River Watershed. Clay Merrithew chose this location as a matter of general interest in the area. We started at the Schribner Brook Falls trailhead on Hwy 785 near Central Blissville. It was October 16th and the fall colours were lovely as were the flowering Witch-hazel (Hamamelis virginiana). Also in abundance was Hop-hornbeam or ironwood (Ostrya virginiana).
Text: Susan Belfry Photos: Susan Belfry, Liz Mills Map: Google Earth