Monday, June 06, 2011

Downed Poplar, Snapping Turtle, Chuck Berry

Today I worked again at Nandina Hills. The Hills have had a tough couple of weeks. About ten days ago a storm uprooted a huge double trunked Tulip Poplar which fell toward the house from 80+ feet away, and quite a ways lower in elevation. The crown of the Poplar tore holes in half the length of the roof (of a house three stories in height the base of which was already quite higher than the base of the tree) and sent limbs through the roof into various upstairs rooms. This was a seriously big tree, possibly close to 150 feet in height. There was a hole about 15 feet across and 6 or so feet deep from the root ball.

The next week another smaller Poplar went down in the other direction across the fence into the neighbor's yard.

The yard also has the tallest Sweet Gum tree I have ever seen outside of Congaree Swamp. Hope it stays put.

I got to play with a very big Snapping Turtle today. His (or her) carapace was maybe 16 inches long and he was chillin' in a little temporary pond formed after the rain. Apparently he has taken up residence on the property. It's quite possible he was/is as old as I am so wanted to afford him all due respect, but I couldn't resist getting him to snap a few sticks of various sizes in two, nor could I resist picking him up a little by his shell and watching his huge legs flail.

I was kind of hoping to see a Water Moccasin today...OK, well, maybe not...but I was worried a little about them given all the frontage on the headwaters of Forest Lake near to what we used to call the "second spillway" growing up in the hood. A lot of water was pouring through the spillway today.

My knee held up pretty well, especially given the extremely hilly and rocky and generally uneven terrain. I tweaked it a few times but not badly.

No deep thoughts today - was just glad to get through the day OK...

1 comment:

Carley said...

I must admit I am jealous if a snapping turtle of that size has taken up residence on your property -- your? property... I don't know about Nandina Hills... at any rate, how fun to be able to watch this wonderful creature bite sticks into pieces!
Thanks for this lovely piece.