Tuesday, August 10, 2010
More things happening in the woods.
Deer are native, but as a species they are out of balance - they are doing too well. This is fine for the deer, but deer happen to eat the same native plants that are already under so much stress from habitat loss. Forest-floor plants are particularly vulnerable to deer.
Deer must find the Solomon's seal genus, Polygonatum, to be particularly yummy, because they all get eaten so quickly from my yard. Surprisingly, a couple of the munched plants succeeded in making berries this time. I wonder if the additional plants I put around them helped hide them just enough.
Next summer I think I will begin more serious gardening work on my woods, with the aim of establishing more natives which aren't present, or which, like the Solomon's seal, are present only in small, vulnerable populations.
Ecosystem gardening isn't about feeding all of the animals all of the time. It's about establishing balance between the animal and plants.