SAVE THE DATES!
THANKSGIVING DAY WALK
Thursday, November 26, 2015, 10 to 11:30 AM
Join FPNL president Karen Linder for a Thanksgiving Day morning exploration of the Mapleton Preserve. This program will begin at the Main Office for the D&R Canal State Park, 145 Mapleton Road, Kingston. Come work off some Thanksgiving day calories, search for wildlife, and enjoy the abundance and subtle beauty of late fall.
Wild Turkey–Photo courtesy Gary D. Tonhouse
Open to all, but preregistration IS requested. Please call 609-683-0483 to reserve a spot.
FIRST DAY HIKE
Friday, January 1, 2016, Noon to 2 PM
ENVIRONMENTALIST POETRY READING BY DANIEL A. HARRIS
Sunday, November 1, 2015
The audience had many reactions, insights and questions that evoked stimulating discussion, as well as the poet’s thoughts about the poems during their creation and maturation.
Daniel A. Harris is a nationally published poet. His second collection of poems, Random Unisons (2013) followed Loose Parlance (2008). Formerly an author of literary critical studies and a teacher of 19th and 20th century poetry, Daniel Harris turned to writing his own poems upon retirement.
For the past decade he has also worked on numerous environmental issues in Princeton, and is currently focusing on regional land-use issues and sustainable urban planning. For more information, please visit http://www.danielharrispoet.net/
NATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY VOLUNTEER SESSION
Saturday, September 26, 2015
Our goal was to remove brush, vines, invasive saplings, and blown roofing material from alongside the large warehouse complex in the Mapleton Preserve. When our session began, this was the prospect that greeted us. Armed with hand saws, loppers, and an inspiring esprit de corps, here is how it looked two hours later!
We are deeply indebted to our clearing crew, and also to five other volunteers who collected trash in the Preserve and along Mapleton Road. Click on the link below to see what happened between “before” and “after.”
ENO TERRA FARM TO TABLE EVENT
Sunday, August 16, 2015
Attendees enjoyed a buffet of delectable dishes prepared by Eno Terra, and also had the opportunity to tour the garden–just a half mile away–were many of the restaurant’s fresh ingredients grow in a two-acre plot in the former seedbeds of Princeton Nurseries. Guided trips through the Mapleton Preserve, the heart of the preserved Princeton Nursery Lands, were also offered.
This year, half of the net proceeds from the event will be donated to the Friends of Princeton Nursery Lands. We deeply appreciate the generosity of all the Eno Terra folk–the Momo brothers, their staff (who volunteered their time), and the vendors who donated food and beverage. We also thank all those who supported our efforts by attending this summer celebration!
WHAT TREE IS THAT?
A tree identification walk at the Mapleton Preserve
Saturday, August 8, 2015
Two dozen participants learned some of the basics of tree identification at the Mapleton Preserve using their powers of observation, keys, and reference guides. President Karen Linder began with a discussion of leaves (simple or compound, alternate or opposite, symmetrical or assymetrical, toothed or smooth-edged, etc.), flowers, fruiting bodies, and bark, using fresh branches taken from a variety of trees. A walk down a nursery path allowed plenty of opportunities to appreciate and learn more about some of the planned and naturally occurring trees of the Preserve–among them, ginkgo, elm, zelkova, witch hazel, beech, maple, linden, redbud, oak, willow oak, weeping cherry, and arbor vitae.
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
“From Witches to Windrows: The Culture of Landscape”
Aura Star, Professor Emerita of Botany, The College of New Jersey, gave an absorbing illustrated talk to a packed house about landscape architecture and the culture of landscape. On a journey from Stonehenge through Versailles and Central Park to Princeton and Trenton, she talked about changing concepts and styles, and some of the notable architects of the world’s great parks and gardens–among others, Capability Brown, Frederick Law Olmstead, and Beatrix Farrand–and gave us a glimpse at post-modern landscape design by such luminaries as Martha Schwartz (http://www.landscapeonline.com/research/article/11728) and Charles Jencks (http://www.charlesjencks.com/#!the-garden-of-cosmic-speculation).
EAT YOUR WEEDIES FORAGING WORKSHOP
Saturday, April 25, 2015
Debbie Naha, a foraging expert and naturalist who holds an MS degree in Food and Nutrition from NYU, gave a fascinating indoor slide talk followed by a foraging walk and taste testing in the Mapleton Preserve.
Participants identified and tried many wild edible plants, such as bitter cress, wood sorrel, wild strawberry, cinquefoil, lambs’ quarters, garlic mustard, violets, dead nettle, greenbriar, redbud blossoms, and Japanese knotweed. To learn more, visit Debbie’s web site: http://www.wildediblesnjpa.com/
SIGNS OF LIFE ON A WINTER’S DAY
Saturday, February 21, 2015
On a cold, snowy afternoon, Karen Linder led a walk through the fields of the Mapleton Preserve, observing signs of life in the winter landscape–buds, insect galls, animals and birds, evidence of feeding, tracks, and scat. The Princeton Nursery Lands are a beautiful place to wander in winter!
MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY VOLUNTEER WORK SESSION
Monday, January 19, 2015
On a brisk but sunny afternoon, an enthusiastic crew took on multiple tasks–clearing of vines and brush from an overgrown tree row, cleaning up the butterfly garden, cutting back wisteria along the fence opposite the ginkgo row, removing invasives adjacent to the Education Building, and collecting litter.
Thursday, January 1, 2015
One hundred and twenty-two people turned out for our 1.5 mile loop hike through the Mapleton Preserve, into the fields on the other side of Mapleton Road, along the D&R Canal and back to the Preserve. Getting that many into a photo was a new challenge for photographer Jonathan Michalik, but we think he did an admirable job!
OVER THE RIVER AND THROUGH THE WOODS–A THANKSGIVING DAY WALK
Thursday, November 27, 2014
FPNL president Karen Linder led a Thanksgiving Day morning exploration of the Mapleton Preserve.
During the walk, someone asked what the cone-like seedpod of the Southern Magnolia was called, so she researched it. Here is how it looks.
The entire unit is called either a receptacle or a follicetum, made up of an array of smaller follicles that are originally closed, but then split open to reveal the red seeds inside. The similarity to a cone reveals the plant’s early heritage – magnolias were one of the first flowering plants, evolving 130 million years ago. Cone-like fossils similar to magnolia receptacles have been found in the fossil record.
She came across another interesting factoid – magnolia petals are tough because they were originally meant to attract the attention of beetles rather than bees (which do not appear in the fossil record until 100 million years ago). Since there were no insects specially adapted to live as pollinators when magnolia-like trees first appeared, the petals and reproductive structures of these first flowering trees had to be robust to survive attention from the hungry clumsy beetles (toughness which has passed on to the modern ornamental trees).