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Mrs. White's orchard

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Today’s hike is at Potomac Overlook Regional Park. It is the choice for several reasons:

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  1. It is warm and blustery, and walking in the woods can be more interesting than sedentary.
  2. Mrs. White’s orchard may be bearing fruit.
  3. I am taking photographs to be used in creating spooky woods paintings.

The walk down the paths is easy today because it isn’t too hot and the downslope feels good. There are a few skittish birds, downy woodpeckers included, that are racing from tree to tree as if the wind is chasing them. Goldfinches have a hard time clinging to flower plants to extract seeds on a day like this.

In early spring, I thought that I saw bear scat here in the park. I don’t know if the park ranger verified its origin or not, but it surely appeared to be. So, today I am pretending in my mind to be a pioneer walking through the woods and keeping an eye out for predators. That will be the theme of some paintings that I will do soon.

Because we haven’t had much rain, the woods is a little dry. However, the fruit in the orchard appears healthy. A few years ago it was so dry that squirrels has eaten all of the apples and pears before they got anywhere close to maturity.

I saw persimmons filling the branches and I am certain that there is a fine crop of paw paws developing. I will check out the paw paws next visit.

On this location in the early 1900s and before, there was a nice farm here. The orchard was much larger. There is a map along the trail that shows the history and how the area became developed.

Mrs. White once lived in a house here. Her house burned down, but while she lived here, she maintained a nice orchard. We see what remains today.