Progress Update 7/19/2017: Nearly all photos have been migrated from the old website

We just finished importing about 300 plant species and 1000+ photographs for that category.  With the exception of a few photos and species that will require special consideration, we’ve finally finished importing all of the photos and species from the former website, which is a pretty big milestone. That’s about 869 unique species and about 5000+ photographs. We’ve also greatly expanded on the information provided for each species.

What’s Next

  • It’s time to start importing our backlog of photos and species that runs from about 2014 to 2017.  So that means new dozens of species and 1000+ new photos coming soon.
  • We will work to restore the “Find by flower color” option which was a very useful feature that was available on the old website.
  • We will put together a special section dedicated to foraging and wild edibles. That was a feature that was available on the old website and we hope to make it better than ever.
  • We will also put together a new special section dedicated to potential dangers of the wild such as deadly poisonous plants, poison ivy, etc…
  • A new section we will be looking forward to is recipes for wild edibles. (Such as pickled ramps, sauteed mushrooms, etc…) We will look to our audience to submit recipes and photos.
  • A few new articles discussing the ecology and habitats of Connecticut. For science.
  • And finally, we are going to work on producing some monthly reports that will help people know what to look for at any given time of the year.

There are also still a few minor bugs and formatting issues on the website that need to be resolved. We will work to make the side-bar a little prettier and more space efficient. We also want to make a few improvements to page layout to improve loading time as well as some additional navigation options. Simply put, we want the website to load faster and help you get to what you are looking easier.

What’s Happening Outside

It’s mid-summer and we have had a fair amount of rain recently. It’s an excellent time to go mushrooming! Amanitas are showing in force, as well as various Boletes and even a few Chanterelles. (I’ve not spotted any black trumpets yet this year, but soon.)

The summer flowers are in full bloom including various milkweeds and all the butterflies and insects they attract.  Make a point of getting to a nice meadow (such as the ones at Earthplace or New Canaan Nature Center) to explore the colorful flowers and their insect companions.

This has been a particularly bad year for ticks unfortunately. Always remember to take precautions outdoors.  Wear socks, long pants, and use insect repellent, preferably containing DEET 40% or more. Always do a thorough tick check after being in the woods. Always shower after hiking. Check your pets for ticks regularly. And learn the warning symptoms of a potential Lyme disease infection (bulls-eye rash, fever, neck and joint pain, headache) It’s no joke this year, be careful!

The Rubus species (blackberries, wineberries, raspberries) are all producing right now so get out and go berry picking. Just watch the thorns.  Blueberries are also in season.

-Mike

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