Wednesday Shenanigans

The team split up for an adventurous and successful Wednesday morning. Some went to go do total demo at landfill (finishing the last big site!), while others did demo at various other sites. I also was working on my dust traps throughout the day, part of my independent project where I am measuring the amount of dust traveling off of unpaved roads. If you are interested in learning more about my dust, go check out my project update! After I finished placing my dust traps, I finished up some demo and phen at a few prairie remnants and headed back for lunch.

The afternoon proved to be an eventful one! The entire team headed out to P2 to get trained in on harvesting. I don’t have photo evidence (sorry guys), but even Jared made it into the experimental plot, an event rarer than a double rainbow! While in the plot, Stuart taught the team the 4 ways to know if an Echinacea head is ready to harvest, then sent us on our way to start harvesting in the experimental plot. The task seemed to be easy enough at first, but proved difficult as we moved along. The culprit of our problems: the 13 lined ground squirrels who call P2 home. Many of the plants had their roots eaten, which we discovered when the peduncle (stem) of the Echinacea was no longer attached to the ground. If the plant was lucky enough to have its roots still intact, it may have had its head eaten off. Daytona and I tried to scare them away when we saw them eating our plants, but the safety of our plants was likely short-lived. The ground squirrels were feeling especially brave, one even jumped on my leg! The excitement of harvesting and the ground squirrels made for a quick afternoon, and soon enough we had to head back and finish up for the day. I collected my dust traps and everyone split up to enjoy their evening!


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