What’s New at the Farm Park

My husband and I took a walk this morning at the Norristown Farm Park. There was nothing exciting about it, really – but being outside on a cool morning in June, before 7 AM, and traveling a circuit of 4.5 miles or so around a place we are familiar with and yet always surprises us – it seems worth noting.

I’ll show you the photos and let you see.

We park at the East Norriton admin building/township park. The bocce court is open this summer, after being closed all last year.

The corn continues to grow up through the golden remnants of the winter cover crop.

I remembered to take a photo of the symbol for the Montco Trail Challenge – a trout. Very fitting for this park with a stocked trout fishing creek running through it, and its own trout fishery up on the hill near the hay barn.

Near the Getty Cottage, at the main entrance to the park from Germantown Pike, we decided to take the loop around the large field that fronts the road. We split up here, going in opposite directions, to meet and continue on together later.

I headed toward the road and turned along it. The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society has been developing a learning garden here for some time. It’s now taking form.

These buildings, right up on Germantown Pike, have become an area related to the garden, though I don’t know how, exactly. Looks to me as if they have building materials here. I wonder if they are meant for the greenhouse that’s to be built?

I continued around the field. I am always struck by how, if you look in one direction, into the park, the scene is so rural:

… and then you turn to the other side and face the highway and the hospital and the suburbs…

I’m seeing these plants all along the edges of every field. I don’t know what they are – I think last summer is the first time I have noticed them. I photographed some detail and will look them up.

I also took this photo of a flyer in a kiosk to remind me to look up the park’s programs. In the past they had quite a few events, walks, and nature sightings to choose from. There was nothing last summer but this year is different.

Well, that’s about it. Thanks for coming along.

About Claudia McGill

A person who does art and writes poetry. That's me!

8 responses to “What’s New at the Farm Park

  1. Lovely. The plant with the cluster of white flowers … resembles fennel but I can’t be sure as I couldn’t see the leaves.

    • I don’t think it’s fennel because the leaves are not feathery (and I would be surprised though thrilled if fennel started growing wild like this in our climate). The plant is beautiful with its purple stems and I remember it from last summer but not ever seeing it before which is odd, but…last year I noticed teasels for the first time and I later confirmed that they are kind of newish to our area (I felt better that I had not noticed them as they were not there!) Over the past few years I have noticed changed in our plants, the level of invasive vine growth and so on (as I harp on in my Reforesters posts) has accelerated. I do not know if this is climate change or just more mobility of plants and insects around the world (we also have the spotted lanternfly now which is an import from Asia and lanternfly stomping is a local pastime…) The Farm Park is always full of surprises.

      • We don’t get snow here (very, very seldom). I’ve seen fennel spring up everywhere, growing to about 1.5 metres! It’s a useful plant and beautiful too.

      • Fennel grows here in gardens but not in the wild. It can reseed I think but I think winter is just too cold. I’ve been doing research and I think it might be poison hemlock. Which is a bad plant. But I’m no expert. I’m going to take more photos and try to find out. The mystery has grabbed me.

      • You will tell us when you know for sure. It’s interesting.

      • Yes. By the way we were in a herb garden at a local arboretum today and they had a giant stand of fennel. I love the feathery light feel of their foliage.

  2. I am no expert on plants at all, as you know, but the plant resembles what I grew up calling cow parsley. I know that is often muddled up with some kinds of hogweed so hopefully it is not giant hogweed since that causes burns.

    • After doing some research, and I am not sure, but I think this is poison hemlock, maybe. The stems are what make me think this. Which is not a good thing. It’s toxic to eat for people and animals, and also can be toxic when touched or absorbed through the skin. Eek. I am going to find out more.

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