Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Archive for January 22nd, 2012

Mustang grape inflorescence

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Click for greater detail and sharpness.

The past three posts have emphasized the twining nature of the mustang grape vine, Vitis mustangensis. The photograph above and two that are coming tomorrow highlight different aspects of the species, and then it’ll be on to variations of red and reddish colors elsewhere.

Inflorescence is a fancy word for the flowering portion of a plant, and here you see the inflorescence of a mustang grape. The flowers aren’t at all showy by human standards, but they ignore our aesthetics and manage to get themselves pollinated just the same. (I’ll admit to taking after myself, because I remember that I made a similar comment about peppervine back in September.)

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 22, 2012 at 2:20 PM

Like a fist

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Click for greater detail.

Yesterday morning’s post featured the tightly twisted young tendrils of a mustang grape vine, Vitis mustangensis; a follow-up post in the afternoon showed tendrils that in their dried-out and faded state served as camouflage for a similar-looking spider. Now comes a picture in which young and old combine. This time a fresh tendril—you know it’s young from its color—has grabbed a dead stalk and in so doing has ended up looking like a narrow fist. Curiously, the dried-out stalk was part of the same plant as the tendril: talk about pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps.

For those of you interested in photography as a craft, points 1, 2, 5, 9, 11, 14, 16, and 19 in About My Techniques are relevant to this photograph. For more information about Vitis mustangensis, and to see a state-clickable map of the places where it grows, you can visit the USDA website.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 22, 2012 at 5:05 AM

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