Yellow against yellow
Yes, mid-April is definitely wildflower profusion time in Austin. The relatively tall and lemony yellow flowers that you see making their first appearance in these pages are square-bud primroses, Calylophus berlandieri, also called sundrops. They stand out from the much greater number of greenthreads that are shorter plants and have flowers of a yellow that can shade a little bit toward orange. The red flowers are Indian paintbrushes, Castilleja indivisa.
The date was April 17, and the location was not a dell but a field across the street from one—from one of the many buildings of Dell Computer scattered across the flat terrain of what has become a commercial section of northeast Austin. This piece of the Blackland Prairie knows nothing of such things, but it does know how to keep on being a prairie. Eventually, of course, something will be built on it, but at least for the week or two after I took this picture the many drivers passing by will have gotten to enjoy the sight—if they’ve looked.
© 2012 Steven Schwartzman