Moses Woodman, located off of Simpson Road in Buxton, is a great place to a walk. This preserve features an extensive trail system which leads to the Saco River. The property also has multiple benches where you can sit and listen to the river. Many interesting species of plants grow here including wildflowers, berries, and trees.
Shagbark Hickory (Carya ovata)- Maine is the Northern extent of this tree’s range. As you wander down the trail at Woodman you’ll notice mature hickories by their vertical peeling bark.
American hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana)- In the Birch family, this tree is also called Ironwood due to the wood’s hardiness. Notice the hop-like fruit that grows on the branches.
Dogbane Leaf Beetle (Chrysochus auratus)- These beetles are flashy and iridescent because they are poisonous due to their tendency to graze on milkweed- which has a poisonous milky sap.
Chicken-of-the-woods (Laetiporus sulphureus)- This mushroom does not look very appetizing after bugs have made it their a meal. When found fresh, this fungus is edible.
Fringed milkwort (Polygala paucifolia)- Many see this flower on the trailside and think it’s an orchid. It is said to increase milk production in mammals and was apparently used medicinally to treat skin inflamations.
Northern starflower (Lysimachia borealis)- A member of the primrose family, it’s leaves are arranged in whirls around the stem. The flower, true to its name, is shaped as a star.
Wild Strawberry (Fragaria virginiana)- It’s easy to identify these plants when they are fruiting but many do not know what the flower looks like. The plants grow low to the ground and the flowers are small, white, and have five petals.
Wood anemone (Anemonoides nemorosa)- This woodland plant is in the buttercup family. It’s leaves are sectioned into 5 parts, as are the flower’s petals. ‘Anemone’ refers to the Latin ‘windflower’ because it’s seeds are dispersed by wind.
These are some of the flowers, fungi, mosses, and trees you will run into at the Moses Woodman Preserve. You can also expect to see chipmunks, squirrels, as well as animal scats and tracks. Keep your eyes peeled when you visit this property- there is so much to see and explore!