Started from Scratch (U9)
If you were here in 1966, you would have been facing a barren mound of boulders, exposed to the full force of the hot summer sun or cold winter wind. It has taken decades, but mature trees (black cherry, black oak), and shrubs (small bayberry, Canadian serviceberry) now provide shade and shelter from the wind for wildlife and visitors.
All the plants arrived as seeds dispersed by wind or brought in by animals that fed in the adjacent woods. Now, the deep shade from the thick canopy of the large trees would inhibit the further establishment and growth of new plants even if seeds were to arrive in great quantities. However, greater light availability at the base of the rubble pile has resulted in a peripheral band of shade-intolerant forbs, shrubs and small trees.
The large boulders of the rubble pile are clearly visible in April before foliage emerges on the branches of dormant trees and shrubs.