Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

No snakes or brooms, but broom snakeweed

with 16 comments

Broom Snakeweed Flowering by Dark Boulder 0355

In Petroglyph National Monument in northwest Albuquerque on September 23rd I saw plenty of broom snakeweed plants, Gutierrezia sarothrae, flowering away. This one in the Piedras Marcadas section of the national monument appealed to me because of its contrast with the darker boulders it was growing among. Notice the sand sagebrush about a quarter of the way down the left edge of the picture (in fact if you follow the link to that post from a few weeks ago, you’ll see there was a broom snakeweed plant flowering behind the more conspicuous sand sagebrush).

Although broom snakeweed is listed for the county I live in in central Texas, it’s not common there, so I was happy to find it flowering in large numbers 700 miles northwest of home. If you’d like to see the distribution by states and counties, the USDA map will show it to you.

© 2014 Steven Schwartzman


Written by Steve Schwartzman

November 4, 2014 at 5:33 AM

16 Responses

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  1. Show us a few petroglyphs while you are at it, please. Love your photos.


    November 4, 2014 at 6:53 AM

  2. That’s fantastic! I love how vibrant it is especially in relation to the landscape. Good eye!


    November 4, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    • The eye and I thank you. I saw lots of these broom snakeweed plants in Albuquerque and photographed several of them.

      Steve Schwartzman

      November 4, 2014 at 10:56 PM

  3. I always loved how nature is pairing colors, shapes and textures and this shot has it all in one, excellent eye!


    November 4, 2014 at 1:29 PM

    • That makes two consecutive ayes for an eye. And yes, it was the combination of colors, shapes, and textures here that led me to post this photograph rather than some of the others I took.

      Steve Schwartzman

      November 4, 2014 at 10:58 PM

  4. It’s really interesting how much more interesting the photo is with that tall rock included, and the sky. I might have been tempted to capture just the plant and the three rocks surrounding it, but there are so many other contrasts added with the expanded view. It’s a beautiful combination.


    November 5, 2014 at 6:18 AM

    • I did take some pictures looking down at flowering broom snakeweed plants, but I’m with you in preferring the photos of this plant that included rocks and sky. I’d planned to show a horizontal picture looking slightly upward from a point near the top of a high spot in the Boca Negra Canyon section of the national monument, but the dark boulders in the upper part of this image carried the day.

      Steve Schwartzman

      November 5, 2014 at 6:41 AM

  5. […] After the recent posts with nature photographs from Petroglyph National Monument in Albuquerque, a couple of people asked to see pictures of petroglyphs, so here goes. The first photograph is from September 23rd; the flowers at the base of the rock are broom snakeweed. […]

  6. Love the composition and textures here. It is nice to see how the plants nestle into their niche together.


    November 25, 2014 at 10:16 AM

  7. […] Gutierrezia sarothrae. Later, while preparing today’s post, I realized that I’d seen broom snakeweed in New Mexico last fall. This is clearly a plant that thrives in arid […]

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