Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage 2014 Day 1

DSC_0141We attended the Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage in Gatlinburg, TN last week. When we arrived on Tuesday, we had to drive through sleet and snow. We stayed at the Microtel across from the Convention Center. Our room had a small refrigerator, flat screen TV but it smelled terrible! We did go that evening to pick up our registration packet, vote on the photographs in the photo contest, and I bought an event t-shirt.

I decided that instead of writing a list of all the plants we saw, I would put them in a spreadsheet and then write the location and notes beside them. This would help me see the big picture instead just a list of a plants and things. You can download the spreadsheet HERE.

You can see my Day 1 Pictures HERE.

On Day 1 (4/16/14) we started the morning on the Porters Creek Hike which started at the end of Greenbriar Rd. I forgot to get the leaders names but they were really good.

Our afternoon hike was led by Leon Bates (from Chattanooga) and Paul Threadgill (from Maryville College).

Things I learned:
1. Violets can be stemmed or unstemmed.
2. All cemetery headstones in the park face east.
3. Formulas to remember sepals, petals, stamens, ovaries concerning s: Mustard (4, 4,6,2), Buttercup (5,5, many, many), Chickweed (5,5,10,3)
4. Basswood is an indicator species.
5. Cranefly orchid has a purple underside.
6. Yellow birch has a flaky bark.
7. Trillium grandiflorum has a yellow ovary.
8. Partridge berry – the two dimples are from the 2 flowers fused together to form the fruit.
9. Rattlesnake fern or grape fern has vascular cambium; Ray Hicks (storyteller) used to tell people it was a ‘seng pointer fern’ because it pointed to ginseng; Cherokee legend has it that if you had a dream that you were bitten by a rattlesnake, you could use this as medicine.
10. The Buckhorn Inn was a really nice place. We had a wonderful dinner with friends! (Dinner was $35 per person)

Original Photo by Pat Hensley

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