Friday, January 2, 2009

Honey, I Bought the Swamp

When last we met, we were considering what I might do with the flooded woods that border our driveway. Hearing the note of desperation in my voice, Sally, who blogs at Sallyacious, sprang into action. She sent me some wonderful links by email, and I found them so useful I want to share them with anyone who might have the same needs. Here they are:

Wetland Communities of Indiana from Taylor University. It seems there are quite a few classifications for wetlands. Some bear positively poetic names; there are fens, and sedge meadows, and shallow marshes. We, on the other hand, appear to have a "swamp forest".

Trying for a positive spin, I looked for a lovely quote about swamps to head this post. My search was an utter failure. Shrek loves his swamp, but he's a misanthropic ogre. (I'm only like that on Mondays.)

Nevertheless, there are some wonderful native trees, shrubs and grasses that can grow in these conditions. Their beauties may be more subtle than the drifts of bluebells, azaleas and ferns I had envisioned, but they would belong there in a way the showier plants never could. The resource above names quite a few.

Landscaping With Plants Native to Indiana is nicely laid out and useful. I've printed it out to take along to nurseries in the spring. There are plants there for all the areas of the property, from the swamp to the back woods, to the fields and flower beds.

Our Land, Our Literature is a link library, a resource for conservation and preservation in Indiana. The wildflower links are are of particular interest here.

I hope my fellow Hoosiers find these and can use them as I will.

Sally, thanks a million for taking the time to find and send these! You rock, girl.


sallyacious said...

Oh, thank you. That's very kind. Honestly, that kind of research is something I really enjoy doing, so it was no bother at all.

You want poetry about swampy woods? Read A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter. I read it at my grandmother's house as a girl, and it made a HUGE impression on me. It's a little sentimental--early 20th century goo--but it's a lovely story. And it's set in Indiana.

MyMaracas said...

Thanks again, Sally, for another great idea. I'll definitely look for that one.

Rambling Woods said...

I have done some research for here in NY but nothing is available like what you have there...Here's to a colorful swamp...

MyMaracas said...

Rambling, thanks! I have my fingers crossed and a couple of books from the library. There is hope.

lisaschaos said...

A swamp forest? It doesn't sound good. :( I have been in plenty of swampy woods/bogs/whatever you want to call them and they are no fun to walk in. :)

MyMaracas said...

Lisa, it does sound ominous, doesn't it? Most of it is dry in the summer, but for now it's not too promising. There aren't any trails in there, I'm guessing for good reason. I'll be buying mosquito dunks by the dump truck full.