This Month at Shaw Nature Reserve
Evergreen needles in snow

As the leaves continue to fall the evergreens become more noticeable in the winter landscape. Evergreen trees—trees that stay green all year—are a staple in our landscape. Take an ‘evergreen’ hike by starting at the Bascom House where you can flip through field guides, enjoy a complimentary cup of coffee or hot chocolate (weekends only), and view the American holly (Ilex opaca) on the northwest sidewalk leading to the house. Head north as you leave the Whitmire Wildflower Garden and you will come upon Eastern white pine (Pinus strobus) and shortleaf pine (Pinus echinata).Take the road over to Wolf Run Trail where you will see Eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana) and a shortleaf pine grove that is a remnant of the ‘Conifers of the World’ exhibit planted in the 1930s. If you hike all of Wolf Run Trail before heading back to the Bascom House you will have completed about 2 miles.

Evergreens provide shelter and food for wildlife. Deer eat the new twigs on shortleaf pine and many birds and small mammals eat the cones. The branches also create a wind block for animals to take shelter behind on blustery days. Gather a few cones in your own yard to put at your bird feeders for the animals to enjoy or place your Christmas tree (after removing all decorations) in your yard to provide shelter for the birds.

Bring your family and friends along to enjoy the evergreens and make Shaw Nature Reserve a part of your family’s holiday tradition! We will have our gates open on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day (however the Visitor Center and the Bascom House will be closed) so you can spend time outdoors while enjoying the holidays. Fresh smells of pine greet you in all the locations mentioned and if you come early in the morning you might be rewarded with the sight of intricate frost flowers on goldenrod stems in the Whitmire Wildflower Garden.

 

 
Featured Events

Friday, December 8
Shaw Family Adventures: Winter Wreath

Thursday, December 14
Native Plant School: The Art and Function of Native Landscaping

Coming Soon

Tuesday, January 16 OR
Tuesday, January 23 OR
Tuesday, January 30
Exploring and Drawing Backyard Birds