Mt. Tammany Trail, Delaware Water Gap, Warren County

April 20 2012:  We went with our family to this very popular hiking place but we always keep an eye out for native plants as we enjoy the outdoors. It was a beautiful day. We headed up the red dot trail from the Dunnfield Creek parking lot

Below is a list of some of the flowers we saw.

Trailing Arbutus
Moss Phlox

These trailing arbutus (Epigaea repens) flowers 
were a bit past prime. They generally bloom earlier 

The moss phlox (Phlox subulata
was a first for us. 


We came across a large population of wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) on the rocky ledge (in the photo) and in the woods overlooking the ledge.

At this point we decided to 
retrace our steps down since our 
granddaughter had enough! 

In the table below I have included links to our photo gallery for the specific plants . See our Spring Photo Gallery for more photos and information.

We saw the three lobed violet and after much checking the leaves, we were not able to distinguish between the two species. On the internet there seems to be some confusion between triloba and palmata. Any help here would be appreciated.

scientific namecommon namelinks to photo pages in spring gallery
Epigaea repensTrailing Arbutus 
Thalictrum thalictroidesRue AnemoneRue Anemone
Houstonia caeruleaBluetsBluets
Aquilegia canadensisColumbineWild Columbine
Phlox subulataMoss PhloxMoss Phlox
Viburnum prunifoliumBlackhaw ViburnumBlackhaw Viburnum
Geranium maculatumWild Geranium 
Viola triloba/palmataThree-Lobed Violet 

Here is a list from Torrey Botanical Society trip logs:   plant list from NY-NJ-CT Botany website for Mt. Tammany   

Hope you will go there and enjoy the native plants.

H. & M. Ling

Kitatinny Valley State Park

The Sussex Chapter of The Native Plant Society of New Jersey sponsored a field trip to Kittatinny Valley State Park was led by State Park Resident Naturalist Lynn Groves. Lynn provided an overview of the 5,656 acre park. The area we hiked is part of the Valley and Ridge Physiographic Province. Interestingly, the part of the park across Limecrest Road is in the Highlands Province. Dolomite and limestone rocks that are readily soluble underlie the Park. Rock outcrops are very abundant.

Kittatinny Valley State Park is rich in plant species diversity. We hiked from the Park Office along part of the Glacial/White trail paralleling Lake Aeroflex which is the deepest glacial lake in New Jersey. Lynn pointed out many native plants throughout the hike. Seeing many species of ferns in close proximity and spotting Walking Fern (Asplenium rhizophyllum) were highlights. Lynn also explained how to differentiate once cut, twice cut and thrice cut ferns. We hiked alongside and through woodlands and adjacent to a large meadow. 

More information about the park: Kittatinny Valley State Park 
For a map of the trails: Kittatinny Valley Trails Map

Following is a list of the plants we saw (common name/scientific name). Included are links to Plant Profiles and Photos that are in this website. Visit our Plant Profiles & Photos page for more information on other specific plants. 

Common NameScientific NameLinks to Profiles& Photos
White snakerootAgeratina altissima 
Pearly everlastingAnaphallis margaritacea 
Indian hempApocynum cannabinum 
Common milkweedAsclepias syriacaCommon Milkweed
ButterflyweedAsclepias tuberosaButterflyweed
Field thistleCirsium discolor 
Wild basilClinopodium vulgare 
White wood asterEurybia divaricata 
Grass-leaved goldenrodEuthamia graminfolia 
LiverleafHepatica nobilis var. obtusa 
Wild bergamotMonarda fistulosa 
Virginia mountain mintPycanthemum virginianum  
Bluestem or Wreath goldenrodSolidago caesia 
Ebony spleenwortAsplenium platyneuron 
Walking fernAsplenium rhizophyllumWalking Fern
Maidenhair spleenwortAsplenium trichomanes 
Spinulose WoodfernDryopteris carthusiana (thrice cut) 
Marginal woodfernDryopteris marginalis (twice cut) 
Christmas fernPolystichum acrostichoides (an example of a once cut fern) 
Smooth alderAlnus serrulata 
American Hornbeam or Musclewood or IronwoodCarpinus caroliniana 
Kentucky coffeetreeGymnocladus diocus (not native to this region) 
witch-hazelHamamelis virginianaWitch Hazel
Mountain laurelKalmia latifoliaMountain laurel
American BladdernutStaphylea trifoliaAmerican bladdernut 
Highbush blueberryVaccinium corymbosum 
Mapleleaf VirburnumVirburnum acerifolium 
Little bluestemSchizachyrium 

Sourland Mountain Preserve, Somerset County, NJ

Information on the Sourland Mountain Preserve:   general information

Map of trails at Sourland Mountain Preserve:   trail map

October 13, 2017: 

It was finally a cool autumn day and we wanted to just get out and enjoy the fresh air and the wooods. We knew that there would be hardly any flowers in bloom but we went anyway. 

With Hubert there is always something out there to see. 

Sourland Mountain Preserve

Ebony spleenwort Asplenium platyneuronEbony spleenwort Asplenium platyneuron
Photos on the left: We found ebony spleenwort (Asplenium platyneuron) clinging to the side of a boulder. The second photo shows the leaflets and the pattern of the sporangia on the undersides of the leaflets.

After inspecting a bunch of moist rotten logs we came across some slime molds. 

Slime molds form giant amoebae (single multi-nucleate cells) that amazingly can spread out to 30 feet and live in leaf litter and in rotten logs. They turn into fruiting bodies when the amoebae run out of food or conditions become unfavorable for growth. 

The two photos on the right show the fruiting structures of Trichia decipiens. They are about 1/8 inch or smaller. The lower photo shows a fruiting structure being parasitized by a fungus. 

The left photo below is the fruiting structure of Arcyria cinerea and is less than an 1/8 inch tall.

The right photo below is the fruiting structure of Lycogala epidendrum and is about 1/4 inch. It differs from a puff ball because of the surface warts and the small size. 

Slime mold Trichia decipiens
Slime mold Trichia decipiens
Slime mold  Arcyria cinerea
Slime mold  Arcyria cinerea

Spicebush Lindera benzoin
Much of the understory was spicebush (Lindera benzoin) which provided some color – green and yellow leaves and bright red oblong drupes. For more information and photos see our spring photo gallery

We also came across an American chestnut that was about 25 feet with no signs of blight at the base.

Unfortunately we saw more deer than one would expect.

It was a beautiful walk and no mosquitoes.

Hope you will visit the Sourland Mountain Preserve.

H & M Ling.

Trip Logs

Hunterdon County

Spring: April 6, 2021: Hike in Musconetcong Gorge Preserve

Middlesex County

Spring: April 18, 2013: Hike in Rutgers University Ecological Preserve

Spring-Summer: 2002: Cheesequake State Park: A transitional zone between two different ecosystems

Summer: July 27, 2014: Botanical Blitz at Highland Park Native Plant Reserve

Morris County

Spring: May 10, 2013: Hacklebarney State Park

Somerset County

Spring: April 14, 2018: Washington Valley Park East Section

Spring: April 21, 2013: Stroll in Duke Island Park

Spring: April 29 and June 3, 2015: Washington Valley Park East Section

Spring: May 13, 2014: Sourland Mountain Preserve – Maple Flats trail

Spring: May 10, 2015: Bio Blitz at Great Swamp in Lord Stirling Park

Fall: September 21, 2014: Bio Blitz at Great Swamp in Lord Stirling Park

Fall: October 13, 2017: Sourland Mountain Preserve

Sussex County

Fall: October 23, 2020: Kittatinny Valley State Park

Spring: April 20, 2012: Mt. Tammany Trail, Delaware Water Gap