Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Milkweed season

I have three types of milkweed blooming in my yard.  I've let a big patch of Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) turn into a jungle near my mailbox. 
Butterfly Milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa) with its bright orange flowers is more attractive.  I have some blooming in a prairie garden in my backyard.

Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) with its brilliant pink flowers is a close contender for showiest milkweed.  It grows naturally near our pond.

All three are great host plants for Monarch butterflies and their caterpillars.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Maple Sugar Season 2020

Michigan's recent weather, with warm sunny days and cold, below-freezing nights, is perfect for maple sugaring.  The temperature changes make the sap flow and a strategically driven spile can divert some into a bucket.  Heating the sap concentrates the sweetness, as water transforms into clouds of steam.

Maple Syrup Festivals near Kalamazoo

March 7-8 and 14-15 Maple Sugar Time Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Chesterton, Indiana 
March 7, 15 Maple Sugar Madness Sarett Nature Center Benton Harbor

March 7-8 Maple Sugar Festival Kalamazoo Nature Center Kalamazoo

March 21-22 Sugar Camp Days Bendix Woods County Park, New Carlisle, IN

March 21  50th Annual Sugarbush Festival  Blandford Nature Center  Grand Rapids

April 24-26 Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival, Wakarusa, Indiana

April 24-26  79th Vermontville Maple Syrup Festival Vermontville
Also consider
Michigan MapleWeekends

Michigan Maple Syrup Events 2020 in Oakland County and Southeast Michigan
Shepherd Maple Syrup Festival

Chicago-area Maple Syrup Events