Follow the Trail with Bill Reid,
The Last Green Valley's Chief Ranger

Goldenrod – the prolific and misunderstood wild plant

September 22, 2020

“Across acres of old pastures, where the goldenrod are taking over, late August and early September turn the land into a tumbling sea of the richest yellow. The fields are awash with waves of goldenrod that flow across the slopes and break against the stone […]


The fall season means Walktober in The Last Green Valley

September 17, 2020

September 22 is the Autumnal Equinox – the official end of summer and start of the fall season. Already the mornings are cooler and soon we’ll begin to see a bit of color on the leaves. The first trees to show fall foliage color are […]


The Fascinating and Deadly Eastern Cicada Killer

September 15, 2020

“All life, under the burning sun of mid-morning, seemed lying low, keeping silent, all except the cicadas.” Edwin Way Teale from Journey into Summer  “Cats may scrape leaves and grass over dead pretty to conceal it, and some wasps drag drugged but living insects into […]


A Farm-to-Table “Harvest Tour” in The Last Green Valley

September 2, 2020

“For man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together. For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad.”  — Edwin Way Teale For almost two decades The Last Green Valley, Inc. (TLGV) has held its annual fundraising event “Tastes of the […]


Chaplin: A Village Suspended in Time

August 25, 2020

In preparing for this article I perused the Town of Chaplin website. A section about the town’s history starts with this sentence, “An extraordinary early 19th century building boom and a 20th century road improvement project created Chaplin, a village suspended in time.” I first […]


A Public and Private Partnership to Conserve Purple Martins

August 18, 2020

I always enjoy hearing from readers of this column. A few weeks back Mariano Librojo from Norwich contacted me and sent pictures of three purple martin “apartments” he erected in his backyard. The structures are set up on tall poles and each has a cluster […]


Burdock, the “Velcro” of wild plants

August 11, 2020

“Nature seems partial to the burdock. What extra pains she seems to have taken to perpetuate this worse than useless plant! Every man’s hand is against it, and nearly every animal has reason to detest it. Against their wills they are engaged in sowing its […]


Dweller of both woods and water: eastern or red-spotted newt

August 4, 2020

After a dry spell we finally had two days with a combination of passing showers, an evening of steady rain and then heavy downpours by the bucket-full for 10 to 20 minutes or so. The following day was sunny and very warm, so I took […]


Exploring Bald Eagle Nests in The Last Green Valley

July 29, 2020

For several years now I have hiked a little used trail that winds along the banks of a tributary to the Quinebaug River. The river twists through a heavy canopy of trees and can be 30 or more feet from bank to bank. Every year […]


The American Chestnut Tree: Tragic Past and Hopeful Future

July 27, 2020

On a late June morning I met up with about 25 people at the parking area of the Wyndham Land Trust’s Bull Hill Project in Thompson and Woodstock. We weren’t there just to hike to the top of Bull Hill for the view, rather we […]


Bluebird numbers on the rise

July 13, 2020

“When Nature made the bluebird she wished to propitiate both the sky and the earth, so she gave him the color of the one on his back and the hue of the other on his breast, and ordained that his appearance in the spring should […]


Exploring the final resting places of historically interesting people

July 8, 2020

The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor was home to many fascinating people. Some are well known throughout the state and country for their roles in government, business and the military. Others are known to us for their writing, art and activism. There are others […]