Paradise Island

Paradise Island is a supposedly untouched (except for some mowed trails) example of what a coastal forest on Long Island once was before deer over population and anthropogenic disturbance. It is within the borders of Bayard Cutting Arboretum State Park in New York, between the Connetquot River and West Brook. The area has too many mosquitos for me to call it a paradise, even for a botanist. But, it is quite a paradise for birds with all the Aronia arbutiflora I found there.

Apios americana (American groundnut)

Found this special bean growing prolifically among phragmites, not much can do that! It has an edible pod, flower, and tuber. This was a crucial food source during pre-colonial and colonial periods in America. The smell of these flowers is very unique and sweet.


A view of the Connetquot river from the South western edge of Paradise Island. The treeline is the river walk of Bayard Cutting Arboretum

The Connetquot river is one of Long Island’s largest tidal rivers. Nearly the entire length of this great river is preserved within a state park that bears it’s name, just North of Bayard Cutting Arboretum.

ME holding some PLANTS.

I thought the sign behind me was kinda funny. A family of Osprey have 2 nests on the Island that Bald Eagles move into once the Ospreys migrate South for the winter.

Hibiscus mocheutos (Crimsoneyed Rosemallow)

I made a large collection of this salt loving flower. The population was super healthy with minimal weevil predation.

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