Get Outside

By |
From Missouri Conservationist: July 2020

A Star is Born

Prairie blazing star blooms in July. These purple blooms grow on unbranched stalks and can be found statewide in glades, upland prairies, ledges and tops of bluffs, savannas, openings of upland forests, ditches, fencerows, pastures, railroads, and roadsides. Where will your star be discovered?

Jelly Time

Wild plums are ripe this month. Known as the best fruit plum in the Midwest, wild plums make excellent jams and jellies. If you want to make a batch, you better get to them in a hurry. Birds, deer, raccoons, and squirrels also enjoy these juicy fruits.

NighttimeNature Symphony

In late July, sit outside at night and just listen. Outdoor Missouri sounds like a symphony, and its loudest solo act is the katydid. Listen as the katydids sing their familiar song, “Katy did, Katy didn’t.” It is the hottest sound of the summer!

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner

Are there more hummingbirds at your feeder? These pint-sized birds are preparing for migration, so they need all the fuel they can get. Be sure and have your feeders ready. To make nectar, mix one part white table sugar with four parts water.

Carry a Big Stick

Take a hike in the woods this month to check out the wildflowers or to look for tasty chanterelle mushrooms. But be warned — spiders are building webs between trees at eye level. Carry a stick on your journey so you don’t get caught in their webs.

Natural Events to See This Month

Here’s what’s going on in the natural world.

  • May Apple fruits ripen and fall to the ground
  • Blackeyed Susans bloom
  • Great blue Herons begin fledging
  • Timber rattlesnakes hunt mostly at night
  • Black Bears feast on fruits and insect larvae

Also In This Issue

Spicebush Swallowtail on a brach
Deception — including false eyes — helps spicebush swallowtail caterpillars survive to adulthood.

This Issue's Staff

Magazine Manager - Stephanie Thurber

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld

Associate Editor - Larry Archer

Staff Writer - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Heather Feeler
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Staff Writer - Joe Jerek

Art Director - Cliff White

Designer - Shawn Carey
Designer - Les Fortenberry
Designer - Marci Porter

Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner

Circulation - Laura Scheuler