Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Archive for April 16th, 2012

A green flower

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Click for greater clarity.

Green is above all the color of chlorophyll—a term made up from two Greek roots meaning green leaf—so it’s relatively rare for plants to have flowers of that color as well. Continuing with relative rarity, I’ll add that the green flower shown here belongs to Matelea edwardsensis, a species that grows natively in the Edwards Plateau of central Texas and nowhere else in the world. Like the recently encountered bush sunflower, this is also a species I’d been seeing for 13 years in Marshall Enquist’s Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country but finally found for the first time this spring. In the case of the Matelea edwardsensis, the encounter took place on April 7 during a field trip to Bright Leaf Preserve on the west side of Austin. Called plateau milkvine, it really is a vine, and the intricate structure at the center of the stylized star confirms that we’re seeing a member of the milkweed family.

Notice, like so many other flowers,
Those of milkweed also favor fiveness.

In honor of that number, those two lines are brought to you in (trochaic) pentameter, while the lines on the flower are brought to you in the milkvine’s own meter.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 16, 2012 at 5:32 AM

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