On October 10th, a beautiful morning even if the slightly overcast sky and the occasional drips of water threatened more rain, I set out for Prospect Park in Brooklyn. I took part in a group hike through the park with the goal of foraging and learning about foraging in this urban parkscape. The group was led by Leda Meredith, author of “Botany, Ballet, and Dinner from Scratch,” as part of Green Edge NYC’s urban foraging series.
Stepping into the park, I wasn’t sure what to expect for the next 2 and half hours. What I came to realize, though, was that this city is not devoid of edible plants even though it is not as “natural” as people may perceive it to be. My own family members were skeptical that we would find anything when I told them about it later.
The parks of New York turn out to have not only edible greens, but species that are good for medicinal and seasoning purposes too. Leda told us about dandelion leaves, epazote, gingko leaves and nuts, and many others.
For a better look at what we did, watch this video I made:
It was big! And green! And solar-powered!
I saw one yesterday while walking on the East Side in Manhattan. I almost missed it because it was on the side of the street under the shade of a tree (how does it get enough sunlight? Go figure!). I had to stop and take a picture.
On Labor Day weekend a few weeks ago, I made a trip up to the Catskills for a few nights of camping in the yard, campfires, and walking in the mountains.
The weather was pretty amazing and I had fun doing outdoorsy things. Sleeping in a tent is so fun! It was really cool to see the Ashokan Reservoir also. This is one of three reservoirs that send New York City all of their tap water. These structures were built in the early part of the 20th century, with some of the reservoir being in service as early as 1915.
All of the water that reaches NYC comes from the Ashokan, Delaware, and Croton Reservoirs and none of it needs further filtering. So NYC tap water is really like natural spring water!
Check out some of my favorite pictures below.
Special 50th Entry!
Female fans often mob their favorite male celebrities, many of them screaming and crying along the way…often at airports, concert halls, hotels, and any other place they can stalk their targets to. Somehow, “favorite” doesn’t seem to be a strong enough adjective in these cases.
This phenomenon isn’t something that is just characteristic of humans. From a biological and ecological point of view, male celebrities may represent all the high quality traits that are desirable in a mate. It would seem natural that the females would congregate around the high quality males so that their offspring would have all the good genes. The scientific term that goes with this idea is sexual selection.
This thought came to me when going on a walk with my younger sister, who, at the time, was attempting to find a male celebrity who was visiting New York City. She followed his Twitter feed, hoping for clues for where he would be next. He announced through tweets that he would be in Times Square, as well as another location, but my sister never found him. She claimed that all she wanted was a hug from the guy, but if it were just a hug she wanted, what would make a hug from him any different than one from a guy friend or even a stranger?
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Yesterday, we made a trip up to the Bronx to see the New York Botanical Garden. The weather was great and we got a lot of good pictures while walking around the garden. I didn’t get a chance to look in the Conservatory, but one day I’ll make it there some day. It would be cool to see all the pressed plant specimens in the herbarium, but those are off limits to the public.
Here are a few of my favorite pictures:
This post is coming after the first few real days of summer weather in New York City. This year’s season has been so far unusually mild, and wet (all of June, basically).
NYC’s climate is typically hot and humid by June, but from what I remember this past Thursday and Friday were the only significantly summer-like days so far.
I’m not sure what this means, or if climatologists have any idea if this is abnormal. But it seems unusual and is something that I feel is worth looking into. Post in the comments if you have any links to other interesting tidbits. I will continue to search for more information and hopefully can report back on it.