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

Exploring The Last Green Valley: Crows bring ‘murder’ to our neighborhoods

July 21, 2019

I think we have a family of crows nesting in our neighborhood. Perhaps they have a nest in the thick woods between our house and the highway, or it might be in the trees south of our back field. We see them frequently throughout the […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: We must preserve the region’s farmland

July 14, 2019

What do 18 farms within six towns in The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor all have in common? Each has been protected from development by the Connecticut Farmland Trust. The town of Lebanon alone has 12 protected farms, more than any other town in […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: Shagbark hickory a beautiful and useful tree

July 8, 2019

We have several hickory trees in our neighborhood, but the one I appreciate the most stands by the stone wall bordering the back pasture. At least 60 feet tall in the open air, the tree benefits from little competition for sunlight. Its rounded crown is […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: Fireflies are our living fireworks

July 2, 2019

“Fireflies create a magic that transcends time and space. Their resplendent displays change ordinary landscapes into places ethereal and otherworldly.” — Sara Lewis, “Silent Sparks: The Wonderous World of Fireflies” Do you remember the first time you saw fireflies? I vividly recall one warm summer […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: Gray tree frogs produce nightly lullabies

June 23, 2019

It was a chilly, sunny autumn morning when I discovered a frog in the grass below a maple tree in my yard. The cool weather had slowed its metabolism, and it hardly moved when I picked it up and held it in my hand. Its […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: We can help protect our pollinators

June 16, 2019

I am pretty sure my neighbors drive by our house and wonder when we’re going to mow the lawn. The fact is, we care more about the wildflowers and important pollinating insects making our yard and fields home than we care about how it looks […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: Lady’s slipper a beautiful forest addition

June 9, 2019

One recent morning, I ventured over to Old Furnace State Park in Killingly for a hike. The park is less than 10 miles from my house and is one of my preferred locations for a forest ramble. Old Furnace has an excellent trail network. I […]


Exploring the Last Green Valley: Remembering Teale and D-Day this Week

June 2, 2019

I am partial to June. It is my birth month and that of my mother, too. It is also the month of the Summer Solstice and when school summer vacation begins. My memories of summer vacation run deep. Summer meant Boy Scout camp, hikes and […]


June is “Busting Out All Over” With Outdoor Opportunities

May 28, 2019

We’re on the cusp of June, and before you know it the summer solstice will arrive with the warmth and heat of the season. If you’re looking to get outdoors and experience countless and diverse locations in The Last Green Valley for enjoying nature, here […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: Black fly a springtime winged tormentor

May 19, 2019

“The sun always crosses the line on time, but the seasons which he makes are by no means so punctual; they loiter, or they hasten, and the spring tokens are 3 or 4 weeks earlier or later some season than others.” — John Burroughs from “Spring […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: Volunteers with noble purpose help monitor fishable streams

May 12, 2019

What do three types of mayfly, four types of stonefly and five types of caddisfly have in common? Each of these micro-invertebrates begins their life in water. Each of these species is also sensitive to water pollution, and therefore serve as an indicator of the […]


Exploring The Last Green Valley: In May, it’s easy to see all things are possible

May 5, 2019

“The world’s favorite season is the spring. All things seem possible in May.“ Edwin Way Teale It seems as if a switch turned on, or perhaps it was due to the night of soft rain, but the morning of April 14 I remarked to my […]