Flowering season 2015
info: in the northern part of the forest, called ‘Nootheide’, trees have been felled this year (wood extraction). Trunks and crowns are lying in various places in that part of the forest and there are piles of firewood along the trails. From 1 March to 30 June however, the wood extraction stops (“schoon” time) and the loggers are not allowed to continue their work. “Schoon” time comes from the German “Schonen” meaning ‘save’, ‘protect’. The “schoon” period helps to protect the vegetation (spring flowers), to ‘save’ and not to disturb the nesting birds.
A dry soil and not a lot of wind: ideal conditions for timber exploitation. We are working in two zones in the forest. The zone by the side of the Hoge Bermweg (see map: orange, with the thinning cycle) will be finished by the end of this year. The other zone in the area Keldergat (see map: purple with the thinning cycle) has started and runs until the end of 2016. During the wood extraction stop in spring no trees can be felled. If you go for a walk during the week or on a Saturday, and you come along these parts of the forest, you may see a logger at work. Always be careful where loggers are working.
The mushrooms get gradually buried under a thick layer of fluttering leaves. The trees are now fully in autumn colors. The gentle temperature makes it perfect to walk in the forest.
Trees are getting beautiful fall colors. On a sunny day it is a delight to walk in the fores, to enjoy it. Falling autumn leaves make for a yellow, brown, orange carpet in the forest. Mushrooms come in all shapes and colours. Please do not pick any mushrooms. This way, everyone can enjoy this wonderful fairy tale atmosphere and the mushrooms can continue to play their role in the forest.
It is now fully mushroom time. The discoloration of the leaves has come to a standstill due to the softer nights. Even then, the forest already is in full autumn atmosphere. Fungi are very important for the forest. They clear away dead wood and leaves on and a number of species, such as the fly agaric, they live very intensely together with the trees. It is therefore very important not to pick any mushrooms. Another reason not to pick them is to let everyone enjoy the wonderful world of fungi.
Just like elsewhere in Flanders it is likely to see the Red Admiral flutter along the sunny edges of the forest. Enchanter’s-nightshade, Small Balsam and Little Robin remain the most prominent summer flowers. Many herbs are starting to get seeds. In the humid and calcareous valley Steenputbeek it is Nettle-leaved Bellflower that is most eye-catching. Along the Lorkendreef between P7 and P8 Touch-me-not balsam is flowering. Ferns and herbs between the newly planted trees are being mowed to create the best opportunities for these young trees to grow.
There isn’t much light now in the forest under the trees. Only ferns can grow in the shade. Along the edges of the paths, however, there is sufficient light for plants to flower. The most notable summer flowers are Enchanter’s-nightshade and Small Balsam. Have a close look at a little flower from Enchanter’s-nightshade: it looks like a doll, especially if the flower has only 2 stamens.