Why Partridge, Pine, and Peavey?

My human ecological background (human ecology being the only major at the college from which I graduated) makes it impossible for me to ignore all parts of an environment. “Nature” cannot be discussed without including all parts: animals (including humans), plants, or rocks. To represent my connections to the environment I know the best, I picked three different alliterative representations of the Maine outdoors.

Of all the wildlife I consistently interacted with while growing up in the woods of central Maine, partridges—or ruffed grouse to a less local speaker—(pictured above) were probably the most common. From spooking them from their nests and getting scared witless by the nearby deep beating of their wings to the more subtle drum of a hopeful male (a sound you can feel in your heart better than you can hear in your ears), partridges were ever-present.

Even more common than the regular partridges in the area were the white pines (Pinus strobus), a plant so splendid and common in Maine to give it the designation of being our state tree. But beyond being a common tree species in Maine, this tree has been hugely important to local people for centuries due to its immune supporting vitamin C content and its uses for making paper and many other wood products.

Eastern white pine
Eastern white pine

Despite the partridge and pine already being apt representatives of my local environment, I decided to feature an important tool to remind us all that humans are as much part of nature as another animal or plant. The peavey is a tool that was invented in Maine for the purpose of better manipulating logs—Bangor, ME having been the logging capital of the world in the 1800’s.

Grampy's peavey
Grampy’s peavey

And so this blog began—once I decided upon the three best representatives of the environment I know so well and will always call home, the focus of this blog became clear: stories and photos about the outdoors and the people that live it. These stories and photos are dedicated to all those who call Maine home, to those who live and work in the outdoors, and to those who appreciate the wonders of the natural world.

20 thoughts on “Why Partridge, Pine, and Peavey?

    Wanda R. Garland said:
    September 14, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    I am delighted with you amazing blog. I will look forward to reading you postings. Happiness to you and Joe and everyone you are working with during this marvelous time in the grand mountains.

    Luka Negoita said:
    September 28, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    This is so great Hazel! Your photos are just amazing. Enjoy every bit of it.

    waterhigh said:
    December 31, 2013 at 12:51 am

    Silly question—how do you get the vitamin C? Make tea with the pine needles?

    PS: I’m a huge fan of Maine’s beauty.

      hazelzs responded:
      December 31, 2013 at 1:37 am

      Not a silly question at all! The most common way to take advantage of the vitamin C found in Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus) is to use water that has come down a bit from boiling (boiling water can “cook it” a bit much and lead to decreased properties and off flavors), pour over several fascicles (clusters) of pine needles in a cup or teapot, cover for 5-10 minutes, then drink! You can play around with the amount of pine needles and the length of steeping. Using a lot of needles and/or letting it steep a long time can make it taste very bitter, but that isn’t a problem as long as you can stand the flavor! Play around with it and let me know how it goes! Glad you like Maine too and very glad you’re checking out my blog!

        Jan Wood said:
        January 12, 2014 at 1:10 am

        The ruffed grouse drumming always makes me thing of Dad trying to start the John Deere Tractor

    Jnana Hodson said:
    April 29, 2014 at 6:26 am

    Once in awhile I yield to these things, and one consequence is that I’ve nominated you for a Butterfly Lighting Award. The details will be in a posting tomorrow (Wednesday) at Jnana’s Red Barn, where I’ll link to you regardless of your decision to follow through. Thanks for doing what you are online, and my best regards for your presentations ahead. In the meantime, take a bow in the spotlight.

      hazelzs responded:
      April 29, 2014 at 7:25 am

      Thank you so much! What an honor. I look forward to the details to follow!

    Tulay said:
    May 29, 2014 at 10:03 pm

    You have such a lovely blog. It definitely deserves more follower. I nominated you for an award. You can check it out here; http://tulayyilmazbotanicalart.wordpress.com/
    Hope you join and enjoy!

      hazelzs responded:
      June 9, 2014 at 10:22 am

      Thanks so much! I’m so glad you enjoy my blog.

    newenglandselkie said:
    June 8, 2014 at 11:12 pm

    The awards are piling on! I nominated you for a liebster award. Details will be in my latest post!🙂

      hazelzs responded:
      June 9, 2014 at 10:28 am

      Thank you so much!

    Thom Hickey said:
    September 1, 2014 at 1:18 am

    Thanks. Delighted to have found your heartfelt and fascinating blog. Regards from Thom at the immortal jukebox (drop a nickel).

    lljostes said:
    October 16, 2014 at 9:41 am

    Great Blog! The scent, soft touch of pine needles takes me way back to when I listened to my teacher read aloud The Boxcar Children. I envied their bed of pine needles! Thanks for stopping by Laura’s Lens and for the .

      Hazel Stark responded:
      October 16, 2014 at 9:45 am

      I, too, loved reading the Boxcar Children! Glad you like my blog as well. You post some amazing photos!

    Robin Follette said:
    February 24, 2015 at 8:39 am

    I am happy to have found you through Twitter this morning. Thank you for following me there. I’ll be following you here and will read a bit each day during my coffee break to get caught up.

      Hazel Stark responded:
      February 24, 2015 at 9:06 am

      And I am glad to have found you through Twitter! I look forward to our mutual appreciation of what we each have to share.

    Judy @ newenglandgardenandthread said:
    April 25, 2015 at 7:55 am

    I call Maine my neighbor and a place I visit as often as possible.🙂

    Katharine Bednar said:
    October 7, 2015 at 9:30 pm

    This is beautiful! You have done a lot of work. Your pictures are the best I’ve seen for identifying plants – so worthwhile to all of us. I will spread the word, especially about the pine needle ‘tea!’. Thank you! All the best!

      Hazel Stark responded:
      October 7, 2015 at 9:32 pm

      Thank you! So glad you are enjoying it!

    walkingstickadventures said:
    March 18, 2016 at 10:38 am

    always good to connect with other naturalists!

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