Orchids, Sphagnum, and More at West Lake Bog
August 10th at 9:00 AM till Noon with Lynn Steil and Dave Wendling. (Please note that the field trip starts at 9:00 AM instead of the usual 10:00 AM)
West Lake Bog is located in the 110-acre West Lake Nature Preserve in Portage. It is a high quality bog with a great diversity of vascular plants and sphagnum. A well kep
t boardwalk makes it easy to visit however wear water proof boots since there is water over the boardwalk in a few places. At the end of the board walk you will get a great panoramic view of West Lake.
This is a great time of the year to visit the bog since you will see a great variety of vascular plants plus a diversity of sphagnum that are unique to bogs. Lynn will focus on the vascular plants including orchids, ferns, sedges, and carnivorous plants. Dave, a novice at bryophytes, will teach you about some of the sphagnum species and other bryophytes that are important in forming the bog mat.
We will not visit Bishop’s Bog since the water table is very high and obscures many of the smaller plants.
Lynn Steil is a retired biology teacher who still gives workshops on plant and fern identification. She is very active in the South West Michigan Land Conservancy and has performed plant surveys for them. Dave is a retired physician who has a special interest in bryophytes. He is very active in the Kalamazoo Area Wild Ones and is a sanctuary steward for the Michigan Nature Association.
Directions are easy from the corner of W Centre Ave and S Westnedge Ave: Take Westnedge south from Centre St for 1.2 miles to S. Shore Dr. Turn left on South Shore Dr and drive a few hundred feet to the entrance to West Lake Nature Preserve on the left. There is plenty of parking there. If you use map quest or get directions on line you may get confused since the directions that I found were not very accurate.