Okay, so what's to see here? Some stones and a scrappy plant? Those of you who participate in trail work sessions may recognize the context of this photo as a bit of stone fill for a low spot on the trail. But the real message is in the scrappy plant. This is a lone opportunist sprout of Japanese stiltgrass, that invader of natural areas which you see along so many trails in the park. It comes from a seed which was carried here from another site on boots or fill material, and is a demonstration of how all the stiltgrass has achieved its invasion. If this insignificant bit of plant life is not exterminated, it will produce hundreds of seeds, creating an ever-expanding population of stiltgrass at this site. If hikers, trail monitors and trail maintainers are vigilant and uproot such opportunists, this new infestation can be avoided.
Thoughts on the park, its residents and how to preserve its natural beauty.