Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Buffalo gourd bonus

with 12 comments

It dawned on me yesterday afternoon that December 4 would be the half-year anniversary of this column, so to mark the occasion here’s a second picture for today: a closeup of a buffalo gourd flower. This is not just an enlargement of the central portion of yesterday’s photograph, but a separate picture taken more closely and with the camera’s flash turned on so I could stop down the aperture to get a greater depth of field (December 1 was an overcast day). Happy second sight.

The "fist" at the center of a buffalo gourd flower; click for greater detail.

For more information about Cucurbita foetidissima, including a state-clickable map showing the many places where this plant grows, you can visit the USDA website.

© 2011 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 4, 2011 at 6:00 AM

12 Responses

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  1. If I were an insect I would want to roll into this velvet loveliness and luxuriate for a time…
    That is, of course, so long as the flower does not stink like the gourd! 😉 ~ Lynda


    December 4, 2011 at 7:39 AM

    • As I was looking through the photographs I took of these flowers, I noticed a bug on the central column in a few of them (but it was facing away from the camera and out of focus, so the pictures weren’t good).

      One native plant field guide claims that the female flowers of this species have a pleasant scent. I don’t think I’ve ever sniffed any of the flowers, but I’ll try to the next time I run across them. Live and learn.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 4, 2011 at 7:47 AM

  2. thanks for your visit and kind comment on my blog Steve
    Beautiful macro you made here, stunning details and sharpness


    December 4, 2011 at 1:13 PM

    • You’re welcome. I’m glad you got to see what one of our native wildflowers looks like.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 19, 2011 at 5:32 AM

  3. Excellent detail!! Cheers!


    December 4, 2011 at 3:29 PM

  4. That’s a very pretty close-up! I also liked the other photo of this blossom!


    December 4, 2011 at 11:28 PM

  5. I’ve never seen a flower like this. Absolutely beautiful!


    December 5, 2011 at 11:49 AM

    • Thank you. Producing such a pretty flower is the plant’s revenge for being so maligned. I drove past the highway embankment this morning and could tell from a patch or two of yellow-orange that even with the temperature dropping into the low 40s the buffalo gourd plants are still putting out some flowers.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 5, 2011 at 11:57 AM

  6. There are soooo many details, beautiful!! It’s so interesting, makes me smile for some odd reason 🙂


    December 7, 2011 at 8:03 PM

    • I couldn’t get these sorts of details without my trusty 100mm macro lens. As for smiles, they’re allowed, even encouraged.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 7, 2011 at 8:36 PM

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