Crum Woods Chronicle

Restoring the Crum Woods

november-3-2016-rhr-473The complication of the SEPTA Viaduct brings to a close a five-year period of construction in the Crum Woods. Seventeen acres of upland forest and wetland were clear-cut for the SEPTA Viaduct construction. Nine different plant communities are part of the restoration plan ranging from lowland meadow to a red oak mixed hardwood forest.

At 2.55 acres, the tulip tree-beech-maple forest planting is the largest restoration community with woody plants in the mix. photo credit: R. Robert

At 2.55 acres, the tulip tree-beech-maple forest planting is the largest restoration community with woody plants in the mix. photo credit: R. Robert

At 2.55 acres, the tulip tree-beech-maple forest planting is the largest restoration community with woody plants in the mix. As the name implies, …

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Chimaphila maculata

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As we reach fall foliage peak here in the Delaware Valley, it is a great time to take a walk in our native woodland the Crum Woods. While exploring the trails, you may discover the native gem Chimaphila maculata, spotted wintergreen, tucked under the colorful fallen leaves.

This small evergreen perennial is conspicuous during this time of year with its white and green mottled leaves against the yellows, reds, and browns of fall. This delicate groundcover is often found in dry oak-heath forests.

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Here you can see the brown capsules that persist until the next flowering season. photo credit:

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Crum Woods Chronicle: Meet the Skunk Cabbage

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by Kate Crowley ‘ 16

Despite some unusually late snow this April, the skunk cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus) is beginning to make its dramatic appearance in the Crum Woods. It is one of the earliest native bloomers in the eastern United States.

In late winter, the spathe, a purplish pod, sticks out of the ground. Within the spathe is the spadix, a knob covered in yellow flowers, which bloom in early spring. These growth stages of the plant are subtle, but worth seeking out for their strange appearance.

Skunk cabbage amidst a carpet of lesser celandine. Photo by K. Crowley ‘16

Skunk cabbage amidst a carpet of lesser celandine. Photo by K.

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