Get Out!

By MDC | September 1, 2023
From Xplor: September/October 2023

Fun things to do and great places to discover nature.

  • Look for touch-me-not (aka jewelweed) along the banks of streams and in wet wooded areas. To learn how it got its name, touch a green seedpod and watch it explode, scattering the seeds that were inside.
  • In September, look for wasps hunting spiders. One jab from a wasp’s stinger, and a spider is paralyzed. After dragging it to her nest, the wasp lays an egg on the still-alive spider. When the baby hatches, the spider becomes its first meal.
  • You can help scientists learn more about birds in Missouri and across the U.S. by counting the feathered friends at your feeder. Project FeederWatch runs from November through April. Sign up at
  • One of the best ways to see the dazzling fall colors of Missouri’s trees is to shoulder a backpack and hit the trail. To find nearby hiking paths, visit
  • Giant puffball mushrooms are fun to stomp and good to eat. Dust them in breadcrumbs, fry them in oil, and drizzle with pasta sauce to make puffball parmesan. Before cooking, cut each puffball from top to bottom. If it’s pure white inside with no sign of a cap or stem, it’s OK to cook and eat. Some mushrooms are deadly. Never, ever eat one you aren’t sure about and never eat them raw.

Looking for more ways to have fun outside? Find out about Discover Nature programs in your area at

Also In This Issue

Mountain Lion

Creep closer for a sneak peek at Missouri’s most mysterious visitor.

This Issue's Staff

Photographer – Noppadol Paothong
Photographer – David Stonner
Designer – Marci Porter
Designer – Les Fortenberry
Art Director – Cliff White
Editor – Matt Seek
Magazine Manager – Stephanie Thurber