Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Joe Ford Nature Center in Owensboro, KY


While visiting our grandparents in Kentucky, my brother, sister, and I toured the Joe Ford Nature Center. It is a 14-acre natural area that is located on the edge of Owensboro, KY. Our tour began at the Wild Fern Trail and as we followed various trail, our tour guide showed us plants as well as several trees native to the area.



My favorite tree was the Osage Orange Tree. It is also known as Hedge Apple. The yellow-orange word is useful for tool handles, treenails, fence posts, and is valued because of its ability to withstand rot and is a strong stable wood.


This peculiar tree is sometimes cover in wart like bumps. Upon the mention of its name, I immediately remembered it from my studies of butterflies. It is a Hackberry and host of the Hackberry butterfly. For hungry caterpillars, this inspires the phrase Bon-appetite!


Pokeweed is a plant that you don’t want to mess around with. The most poisonous part are the roots, then followed by the leaves and stems, and the berries have the smallest amount of poison.


Watch out for poison ivy on the trails. Finally, I know how to identify this plant. It sounds crazy that I’ve not learned or at least I don’t remember what the plant looks like! I don’t recall ever making contact with poison ivy and hope I never will.

 tag along butterfly

Friendly butterflies greeted us along the way.


Mullein plant flowering along the path.

turtle on trail 

We now begin the race of the turtle and the hare.  Mr. turtle has just made contact with the path that leads to the finish line! Now, we have ended our tour of the Joe Ford Nature Center. I hope you all have a great week. I will continue our adventures in Kentucky in my following entries.

Elizabeth’s Traveling Tips:


When touring the US, a trailer or B-van is a convenient form of transportation. While in Kentucky visiting grandparents, we camped at two sites and had our own bedrooms, kitchen, and bathrooms. It’s like a traveling house!

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