Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography


with 15 comments

Blackfoot Daisy Flower Head 1202

Wandering along a trail in my northwest Austin neighborhood on August 1st, I stopped to photograph this flower head of a blackfoot daisy, Melampodium leucanthum. It struck me as the most pristine specimen of that common wildflower I’d ever seen. I don’t know what the very tiny specks of black on the white rays are.

© 2014 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

October 5, 2014 at 5:45 AM

15 Responses

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  1. Really wonderful picture.


    October 5, 2014 at 7:41 AM

    • This picture is from August 1, but I saw clusters of these flowers as I drove across western Texas yesterday.

      Steve Schwartzman

      October 5, 2014 at 7:46 AM

  2. Pristine is a good word. Without your pointing out the tiny black specks, I would have declared this one perfect, and gone off thinking I needed to clean my computer screen. It’s a beautiful flower, and I do like those little yellow “curls.”


    October 5, 2014 at 7:52 AM

    • I’m happy to have saved you a screen cleaning, unless your screen actually needed cleaning.

      I keep wanting to make the noun pristinity, but no dictionary is willing to humor me. Too bad, because pristinity would rhyme with divinity and be an attribute thereof. Oh well, in the process of searching for that non-existent form I learned that the ‘unspoiled’ and ‘spotless’ senses of pristine date from only about a century ago.

      Steve Schwartzman

      October 5, 2014 at 8:13 AM

  3. Perfectly lovely! and I love the idea of ‘pristinity’ as an attribute of divinity – smiles –

    The Course of Our Seasons

    October 5, 2014 at 9:43 AM

  4. The specks are barely noticeable and hardly worth the mention. The flower is perfect for my money and so is the image. Like Linda, I really like the curly curls.

    Steve Gingold

    October 5, 2014 at 5:51 PM

    • I’ll pretend that the tiny black spots are flecks of vanilla in the ice cream of the broad white ray flowers, which contrast with the star-like yellow disk flowers and their curling parts.

      Steve Schwartzman

      October 5, 2014 at 9:34 PM

  5. I wouldn’t have noticed the specks if you hadn’t pointed them out! Pristine was exactly the right choice of descriptor…..

    Cynthia, aka Gaia gardener

    October 5, 2014 at 6:38 PM

    • The specks are small indeed, perhaps just blown onto the white rays from something nearby. Had I noticed them at the time, I might have tried to blow them off.

      Steve Schwartzman

      October 5, 2014 at 9:36 PM

  6. Stunning, specks and all!


    October 5, 2014 at 8:25 PM

    • I’ve made speck-tators of you all.

      Steve Schwartzman

      October 5, 2014 at 9:37 PM

      • So true! A close up of my skin would probably reveal very large specks but then I don’t claim any pristinity, so a few specks and splotches here and there wouldn’t matter.


        October 8, 2014 at 2:43 AM

  7. What a beautiful flower!


    October 6, 2014 at 10:43 PM

    • And I see from the USDA map that this species grows across most of Arizona, so you might well have seen it when you lived there.

      Steve Schwartzman

      October 7, 2014 at 7:27 AM

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