On Sunday, I joined an Urban Nature Walk in the Arnold Arboretum led by Jef. Last year at this time, a few magnolias, cherries, and red maples were blooming. This year, winter still held sway with temperatures in the 30s F, a cold wind, and patches of snow hiding in shadow.
Despite the cold, we found a few plants in flower. Skunk cabbages (Symplocarpus foetidus) were popping up near the marsh.
The rosegold pussy willow (Salix gracilistyla), native to East Asia, was also starting to bloom.
Witch-hazels lined Meadow Road with their yellow-tail flowers.
We found many scattered snowdrops but only a few crocuses.
Most trees, however, carried their branches bare. And the beech trees still held onto their ghostly white leaves.
Jef brushed aside leaf litter on Bussey Hill and discovered a couple of millipedes.
And I found this fungus gnat (thanks to John Carr on Bug Guide for the ID).
Jef is especially interested in mushrooms at the moment and pointed out a piece of wood colored green by the green elf-cup fungus.