Flashes of Color: Dragonflies, Butterflies and More in Your Yard

The Long Grove-Kildeer Garden Club invites you to join their April meeting for this informative program.

Dragonfly 1Janet Hawgen has spent years photographing and documenting the beautiful but small winged creatures that populate our yards and parks. She will share some of her great photography as well as the natural history of these important and colorful creatures that bring added life to a healthy garden. Many improve our comfort and health by devouring pests (mosquitoes). Others add to the beauty of our environment by both their dazzling colors and by pollinating our plants.

Day and Time: April 10 at 9:30 a.m. at the Reed-Turner Nature Center, 3849 Old McHenry Rd in Long Grove.

Blue butterflyGuests are always welcome.

Contact Kathy Michas at 847-487-6985 or kathymichas33@gmail.com if you have any questions.

 

 

 

 

 


 

Welcome the Birds Back to Long Grove

Scarlet TanagerReed-Turner Woodland is a favorite stopover point for many species of birds migrating north to their nesting grounds. And, of course, it is the summer home of dozens of species. Early May is the best time to spot both the travelers and our local residents.

Join Kathy Michas on a guided family bird walk at 7:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 6. [Yes, the birds are awake and most active early in the day…after all, the early bird gets the worm.] Dress for the weather and bring binoculars. This is an event for anyone interested in learning about the birds in our area.

There is no fee for this event but registration is required as there is a limit to the size of the group. Call 847-438-4743 or email syoung@lgparks.org to register (be sure to include the number in your party if you register by email).

Meet at Reed-Turner Nature Center, 3849 Old McHenry Rd, Long Grove.

Start time: 7:00 a.m., May 6.Oriole

How many birds are there to see?  In spring, an experienced birder would see 25-40 species.  Novices in a noisy group will see fewer.  Click on the image of the Baltimore Oriole (to the left) for a list of birds typically seen at Reed-Turner in the spring- and keep coming back until you have seen them all!

 

 

 

 


 

Teasel Time – Take a Look Around Your Neighborhood

 WANTED

Dead or Alive

TEASEL

Teasel stalks in flower

 

Teasel flower- close upIf you do not have yard waste pickup service, then Deposit (in paper Yard Waste Bags) in Dumpster at Village Water Works (South of Sunset)

 Teasel along road

 

For more information on teasel click HERE.

Look around your neighborhood in sunny areas, especially those near roadsides or disturbed areas.  July is “prime time” to see this year’s invasive teasel crop bolt in size from a foot high leafy structure to its 6 ft tall stalk with the characteristic round flower head that will turn into a bristle-covered seed head. Stopping the spread of teasel means removing this flower or seed head before the seed is dropped.  Click the link above to learn how to do it.


 

Butterfly Garden Flourishes in its First Full Summer

Erin McDermott earned her Girl Scout Gold Bar Award in 2015 by designing and planting a butterfly garden here at Reed-Turner Woodland.  While the focus was on providing food for Monarch butterflies, the garden includes numerous flowering plants that feed many species of butterflies. Erin’s design also included the construction of two benches (one adult size and one sized for the younger set) so that visitors could sit, relax, and enjoy observing what comes to the flowers.

This is the first full year of the garden and it is flourishing.  The plants are healthy and well into their bloom cycle.

Among the plants is milkweed which is an essential element for a Monarch garden, as Monarch caterpillars only feed on the leaves of milkweed.  Milkweed, however, plays a double role.  Its flowers are a food source not only for the Monarch adults but also for hummingbirds who visit the large clusters of tiny flowers for the nectar.  If you are lucky you’ll get to see some of these incredible birds, along with a variety of butterflies.

We invite you to visit the garden, sit and observe the garden and the animals it attracts.  You reach the garden by following the short path which starts on the north side of the parking lot (the same side as the Nature Center entrance sign).

Click on the image below to see some of the flowers in bloom now (July 1) or which are just about to be in bloom in the upcoming weeks.

milkweed-monarch


 

New Long Grove Resident to the Rescue

…The shingles were falling like leaves in a late fall rainstorm.

That was the situation last winter for the Long Grove Park District’s equipment garage at Reed-Turner Woodland. The District recognized that a new roof was essential to protect the structural integrity of the garage and its contents.  The question was how to fund the repairs.  We decided to include the garage roof as one of our “wish list” items in our annual December donation request letter to the community.

Peter Czaja

Peter Czaja

As everyone wishes, Santa actually arrived – in the form of Peter Czaja, a new resident of Long Grove.

 

 

 

Peter, the owner of WMRoofing and Construction in Rivergrove, called the Park District office just before Christmas and asked if we still needed a new roof.  We of course said yes.  He offered to donate one to the Park District.   Peter says “I believe in giving back to the community and this is something that I can do.”

So, on a beautiful spring day with the wildflowers in bloom, the Woodland was filled with some unusual

New roof underway.

New roof underway.

sounds of hammers and staple guns as Peter’s crew removed and replaced the garage roof with new shingles selected to both blend in with the roof of the adjacent Nature Center and to last a looong time!

With the roof done by the end of the day, Long Grove Park District President Jane Wittig was very happy as she thanks Peter for the excellent work.

Peter + Jane + Roof

Park District President thanks Peter for the great work

 


 

Let it Flow – Unjamming Logjams

Longview Meadow

The Park District received a Lake County Stormwater Management Commission matching grant for 2016. Essentially, the grant deals with rain.  When it rains where does the water go? Much of it runs off your yard and driveway into ditches and culverts and then into a stream such as Indian Creek.  This and the other streams in the Long Grove area empty into the Des Plaines River and, after a long journey, reach the Mississippi River and eventually the Gulf of Mexico.   Sometimes this journey faces obstacles such as the 21 logjams currently impeding the flow of Indian Creek across the Long Grove Park District’s 57 acre Long View Meadow wildlife habitat area at the corner of Rts. 22 and 83. Long View Meadow is a significant migrating bird site.  Over 160 species of birds have been spotted there in the last year.

Read more about the effects of these logjams on the habitat.


 

Santa Came and the Visitors Brought Gifts

Santa+2 KidsWhile Santa listened to the Wish Lists of his many visitors, the visitors also brought  gifts for those who might otherwise be missed on Christmas.  As the families streamed in, the stack of gifts under the tree for the needy grew steadily.  All of the toys have been delivered to Toys for Tots for distribution in the area.

 

The Park District thanks all of our guests for their generosity.  While we ask for “an unwrapped toy” (singular), many of the guests brought bags of toys.

Image of Christmas Tree with Donated Gifts

Giving Tree

As Santa left, he said that he looks forward to his next stop at Reed-Turner in December of 2016. Check the web site as Christmas approaches for the exact date and time. We hope both our regular visitors and newcomers will join the fun.