Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Limestone gaura

with 4 comments

Limestone Gaura Colony Flowering 0577A

As we approached Austin on the way back from Lubbock late in the afternoon on April 17th, I glimpsed quickly passing bits of red along US 183 in Burnet County that made me think I should return sometime soon for a better look. Two days later I did so, as this picture confirms. You’re looking at Gaura calcicola, called limestone gaura, which, like a bunch of species you’ve seen over the past few weeks, makes its debut in these pages today.

I often point you to a USDA map showing the distribution of a species. The one for Gaura calcicola is less accurate than it could be because it leaves out at least two Texas counties where the species grows: Burnet County, as shown in today’s photograph, and McCulloch County, the site of the photograph in Marshall Enquist’s Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country. To the credit of the USDA, though, all its maps are followed by a disclaimer: “However, not all populations have been documented, so some gaps in the distribution shown above may not be real.”

© 2014 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

May 22, 2014 at 5:51 AM

4 Responses

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  1. Also known as Texas beeblossom??


    May 22, 2014 at 8:21 AM

    • Apparently so, but not till I looked at the USDA map had I ever run across that name. Why this species should be singled out as having blossoms that attract bees, I don’t know; many other flowers attract bees.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 22, 2014 at 8:43 AM

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