I’ve been on a 16 year crusade, and now, finally, The Buckthorn Man is coming home. I never did find the holy grail amongst the buckthorn, and while I was gone, my home was invaded by mold. Pati suspected it long ago, but I had a tin ear — perhaps caused by the whining of the chainsaw — and I did not recognize the impact this could be having on our health, especially Pati’s lungs. I was under the spell of invasive species; I had become an Invader Crusader.
We started by “doing the grammar” i.e., studying mold: where it comes from, how it grows, and most importantly, how to get rid of it. We’ve enlisted professional support to identify if we did in fact have a mold problem, and then to find out where it had established itself in the house. I’ve been cleaning every nook and cranny for the last two months and I’m currently painting the joists and walls in the basements, where the mold was thriving.
We also picked up a top-of-the-line dehumidifier and plan to do a prescribed burn in the basement next spring (I’ve heard that mold cannot tolerate fire.)
So many things have changed since I left. Why, I just heard there is a new “secret” trade agreement called the Trans-Pacific Partnership and I’m eager to find out more about it. And I’ve heard talk that something called U.N. Agenda 21 could be influencing the transfer of public lands to private ownership.
Yes, yes, it looks like it’s time to stop all this crusading and spend some time taking care of business at home and in my local community; there’s more to life than buckthorn and garlic mustard.
I’ll always treasure my time at The Springs. Last month I was preparing to give a tour to a a group from the Natural Resources Foundation…
with my good friend Jared Urban, who coordinates the State Natural Areas Volunteer Program in southeastern Wisconsin, and we met with Ben Heussner to get an update on the dam removal project.
The “head cut” is forming slowly.
Jared and I had an excellent time with the folks from the Natural Resources Foundation.
Jared with Kitten Tails.
I got a chance to talk to NRF board member Dave Adam at the Scuppernong Spring.
It was a beautiful day and Pati joined me later for a walk at The Springs…
and Ottawa Lake.
Last Thursday I was honored to receive the “Invader Crusader” award from the Wisconsin Invasive Species Council.
I got a chance to give a brief talk.
Pati celebrated with me and we toured the Olbrich Botanical Gardens after the event. She is always up for adventure and jumped at my suggestion to take a short drive west to spend the rest of the day at the Pleasant Valley Conservancy SNA. Kathie and Tom Brock have created something very special.
I’ll be working on the house for at least another month and enjoying some of Pati’s home cook’in, or rather, bak’in.
See you at The Springs!