Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Nueces coreopsis

with 15 comments

In case this morning’s wildflower mixture left you wanting a closer look at the Nueces coreopsis, Coreopsis nuecensis, here’s your shot at one, via my shot of several.

Another name for coreopsis is tickseed, based on the appearance of the seed capsules in this genus. The dark red markings on the flower heads of this species have given it the alternate name crown tickseed. The Nueces, by the way, is a river in Texas; the word is Spanish for ‘walnuts.’

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 21, 2012 at 1:29 PM

15 Responses

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  1. This is so pretty..makes me want to walk through a field and pick some for home..Thanks for sharing 🙂


    April 21, 2012 at 2:13 PM

  2. The darker center on the top two give the appearance of a flower within a flower. Very stunning color!
    ~ Lynda


    April 21, 2012 at 4:20 PM

    • That’s a good description, a flower within a flower. Some of the others nearby weren’t as pristine as these.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 21, 2012 at 5:30 PM

  3. Lovely image, Steve. (and interesting too). Here in Melbourne, our tickseed flowers are plain yellow and of the double flowered variety called Coreopsis ‘Sunray’.

    I find them very hard to photograph unless it’s late afternoon and there are shadows on the lower petals.

    I must say, I am really enjoying your photos of flowers in your part of the world. Sometimes they are similar to our Australian varieties, sometimes they are very different.


    April 21, 2012 at 8:07 PM

    • I had the same reaction the one time I visited Australia, which was seven years ago. Many of the flowers I saw were alien to me, although I was really surprised one afternoon when I went for a walk on a path in Wollongong and came face to face with some lantana, which is native here in Texas. (I know I mentioned this in a comment once, but I can’t remember to whom.) In any case, I’m glad you’re enjoying our Texas flora.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 21, 2012 at 8:21 PM

  4. This is such an elegant portrait of a beautiful flower. Just beautiful. I often see so many coreopsis in a group that I forget what an elegant shape it has. Thanks.


    April 21, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    • You’re welcome, Nancy. Like you, I appreciate the “regular” coreopsis that we have in Austin, so it was a treat to get to see this species that grows an hour away. Elegant is a good way to describe the shape—and I’m pleased that you’ve applied it to the portrait as well.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 22, 2012 at 7:23 AM

  5. I’m wondering if the yellow/gold beauties which have sprung up along our roads are coreopsis. They’re so dense – I’ll have to stop on my way to Galveston tomorrow and have a look. This variety surely is beautiful.

    I’ve always heard the Nueces was named for the pecan trees along its banks – perhaps the native black walnut was more prevalent in the days when the river was named, and modern folk have assumed pecan because that’s what they see. In any event, now I can’t stop singing The Rivers of Texas.


    April 22, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    • The yellow flowers could be a type of coreopsis; greenthread (Thelesperma filifolium) is also abundant now, and I’ve seen large colonies of it in various places in the central part of the state.

      The Handbook of Texas article that I linked to in my text agrees with you that the river was named after pecan trees. Pecans are closely related to walnuts, and European settlers who encountered new species in the Americas often recycled the name of something similar that they were familiar with from back home. That could be what happened in this case.

      Thanks for the link to the song that mentions so many of the main rivers in Texas. I hope you can get it out of your head before too long.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 22, 2012 at 3:14 PM

  6. Great photo! The light is perfect!


    April 22, 2012 at 3:18 PM

  7. I like the red bits on these! It amazes me how God’s paintbrush is so perfect and appears random, imperfect. So many designs! I delight in them!


    June 21, 2013 at 7:42 AM

    • Yes, the red traces here are special. As one commenter (Lynda, above) put it: “The darker center on the top two give the appearance of a flower within a flower.” And if I can use your words to paraphrase as saying: So many designs, so little time.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 21, 2013 at 7:49 AM

  8. […] The Nueces coreopsis, Coreopsis nuecensis, doesn’t grow in Austin, but I began to see some about an hour and a quarter south of here on my April 4th foray. The magenta flowers are phlox; the red ones are Indian paintbrushes, Castilleja indivisa; and there are some bluebonnets, Lupinus texensis, mixed in. If you’d like a closer look at a Nueces coreopsis, which is the wildflower in this group that you’re least likely to be familiar with, you can check out a post from 2012. […]

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