Notes from the Island
Autumn is here and the leaves are turning and falling onto
the lawn and into the river. The temperature is dropping and on cool
mornings a mist rises off the Potomac.
The club has three new club canoes - Old Town Discoveries
purchased from an outfitter on the Eastern Shore. Last Friday David
and Jane Winer, Johnna Robinson and I paddled the boats from Lock 10
down to the Island. It was a beautiful fall morning and we saw great
blue herons, terns, mallards, wood ducks, osprey, swifts, and
cormorants. After we arrived on Sycamore and put the canoes away,
we looked up and saw a bald eagle circling overhead.
The foliage is dying back, but a few flowers are still
blooming. As you walk through the volleyball court, there is a nice
stand of wild sunflower still flourishing on your left and a batch of
pale jewelweed on your right. On both sides there are small bunches
of smartweed, a pink flower that grows kneehigh. The smartweed has
invaded the lawn and gives the yard a reddish cast. And as you walk
into the woods you'll notice white snakeroot all around you. If you
return by the Virginia side trail you can spot some blue Virginia
dayflower and garden phlox near the swimfloat.
This does not seem to be a good year for harvesting paw
paws, black walnuts or hickory nuts on the Island. However, the wild
persimmon trees on the Northeast Passage islands are heavy with
orange fruit and we're hoping the squirrels don't eat them all before
the first frost.
Come down and enjoy the Island before the cold weather sets
-- Peter Jones, Sycamore Island Caretaker