Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

A close view of stork’s bill

with 15 comments

Click for greater detail.

Here’s a close look at a stork’s bill flower, Erodium texanum, with another one mostly hidden behind it. The location was Pedernales Falls State Park, a few miles away from where I took the previous picture showing a stork’s bill colony on March 27. Note the stylized red star at the flower’s center.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman


Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 28, 2012 at 1:22 PM

15 Responses

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  1. This color is amazing, so vibrant and rich!


    April 28, 2012 at 2:04 PM

  2. Absolutely gorgeous flower! Excellent macro Steve! 🙂


    April 28, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    • Thanks. The windy days we’ve been having all this week have made it hard for me to take pictures like this.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 28, 2012 at 2:38 PM

  3. I looked this up because I thought it looked like a geranium, and sure enough they are related! What a knockout color! ~ Lynda


    April 28, 2012 at 7:19 PM

    • Yes, the seed capsule like a stork’s bill is a hallmark of geraniums. The Greek root of the word meant ‘crane,’ another similar bird.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 28, 2012 at 9:01 PM

  4. That’s sure pretty! It’s different from the one that we have here, Redstem Stork’s Bill, Erodium cicutarium. I love the star in the center!


    April 28, 2012 at 10:39 PM

    • Actually we have Erodium cicutarium here too, but unfortunately it’s an alien invasive from the Mediterranean. Back in February we were covered with it, more of it than I’d seen before in my 13 years of photographing wildflowers. The native Texas species shown here has noticeably larger flowers of a deeper purple, and it seems to bloom a little later in the season, so it’s easy to tell the two apart.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 28, 2012 at 10:53 PM

      • I like the native species better! The Redstem seems to only grow in and around developed areas. I don’t see it in other places.


        April 28, 2012 at 11:22 PM

      • While the alien one is common in developed areas here too, I’ve unfortunately seen it out in the country as well. In March I had a report from a friend a couple of hours northwest of Austin in the Hill Country, who said her rural area had tons of it. So let’s hear it for the larger and more colorful (if not more numerous) native species!

        Steve Schwartzman

        April 28, 2012 at 11:38 PM

  5. The seed capsule’s behavior is very much like my Cape Honeysuckle’s, with one difference. The Honeysuckle’s seeds dry and then split open lengthwise, giving them the appearance of an opened bill. The Texas storksbill, on the other hand, has clever little seed pods that curl and straighten with rising and lowering humidity, eventually releasing the seed. Amazing!


    April 29, 2012 at 6:48 AM

    • Thanks for providing a link to the description of the way the seed capsules curl and straighten according to the humidity, which I didn’t know about (there’s so much to learn!). I like your adjective “clever” to describe the capsules’ behavior.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 29, 2012 at 8:01 AM

  6. Gorgeous photo Steve!!!! I love the star in the center!


    April 29, 2012 at 10:52 AM

  7. […] I’ve got a billfold and birds have bills, but while I’ve posted pictures of flowers and birds’ bills, I’ve never used the word billflower. I have, however, shown a wildflower called stork’s bill. […]

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