Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

A Hill Country wildflower meadow

with 19 comments

Click for greater size and clarity.

Bluebonnets (Lupinus texensis), bladderpods (genus Lesquerella), prickly pear cactus (Opuntia engelmannii).

Location: Texas Park Road 4 near Inks Lake in Burnet County. This picture goes back to April 1, but I was in the same area again on April 11 and I can confirm that I still saw plenty of fields and roadsides as dense with flowers as the meadow shown here.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 15, 2012 at 5:41 AM

19 Responses

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  1. And look at all nopal cactus next to the bluebonnets…true Tex-Mex.


    April 15, 2012 at 6:29 AM

    • A landscape good enough to devour—at least with your eyes, if you don’t want the trouble of removing all the spines and glochids from the cactus before cutting it up and cooking it. (Note to those in other regions: nopal is the Mexican Spanish word for a prickly pear cactus and especially its edible pads.)

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 15, 2012 at 6:46 AM

  2. Such abundance! Like Georgette, I’m interested in the cactus. It seems early for them to have bloomed – are those flower buds atop them, or the fruit already forming?

    I noticed yesterday my spineless cactus are putting out new growth – at least three new pads will be forming. And the first of Godot’s three buds has opened. I’ll have to hurry to get a photo – one day, and the show is over.


    April 15, 2012 at 7:49 AM

    • They were buds. Three days ago, on the edge of a street right here in my Austin neighborhood, I saw my first prickly pear flowers of the season. Yesterday, a couple of blocks closer to home, I saw a few more. I’d been waiting for prickly pear flowers, and now their time appears to be at hand. I also need to go and check out the lace cactus I showed a (flowerless) picture of last month.

      Good for Godot.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 15, 2012 at 8:08 AM

  3. My goodness! Is this a Renoir? a Cassatt? What a lovely photo!


    April 15, 2012 at 8:41 AM

  4. I guess you still have a lot of bluebonnets. Are most of the flowers in the spring, or do you have things blooming throughout the summer?


    April 15, 2012 at 8:52 AM

    • The spring is the most exuberant season, but we have a second round of floral displays once the heat of summer begins to relent a little. That said, native plants here are adapted to our conditions, and even in the summer there are individual flowers that do their thing and not only aren’t bothered at all by the heat but even thrive in it.

      The bluebonnets in Austin are fading, but four days ago, when I was in the Hill Country an hour or two to the northwest of here, where nights are cooler, I found them still vibrant.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 15, 2012 at 8:59 AM

      • It is good that you have flowers to photograph all summer. I am looking forward to following your blog this season, now that I have found it.


        April 15, 2012 at 9:31 AM

      • Great, welcome. I started this blog in June of last year, which is already summer here, so only now are readers seeing the profusion of our spring wildflowers. You’re welcome to browse the archives in the sidebar at the right if you’d like some idea of what I found to photograph last summer, even in the worst drought on record here.

        Steve Schwartzman

        April 15, 2012 at 9:54 AM

  5. Love the color contrast!!!


    April 15, 2012 at 10:15 AM

    • Yes, there can be quite a contrast at this time of year, and there are so many colors to play off one another.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 15, 2012 at 11:40 AM

  6. Now this is the scene I was imaging a few days ago.. I’d love to have stood there to see it!! Bluebonnets are so gorgeous!

    Just A Smidgen

    April 15, 2012 at 10:59 AM

    • Too bad Calgary is so far from the Texas Hill Country. One of these springs you may get the chance.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 15, 2012 at 11:41 AM

  7. Beautiful!


    April 15, 2012 at 2:10 PM

  8. […] previous post showed you bladderpods in the aggregate, but these wildflowers in the genus Lesquerella (and perhaps the species gracilis) grow low and […]

  9. It does look like a painting from one of the great masters!


    April 16, 2012 at 9:01 AM

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