What I found in Great Hills Park
On May 19th I parked along the aptly named Floral Park Dr. to take some pictures of the white prickly poppies and Mexican hats growing in the southern section of Great Hills Park, but as soon as I got out of my car I noticed a white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) at the edge of the woods on the far side of the Mexican hat colony. I switched to my longest lens and walked over to the railing by the sidewalk, whereupon the deer noticed me and began staring and listening, as shown here. From the velvet-covered antlers forming on the deer’s head I take this to be a young male, but occasionally female deer grow antlers too.
The large green leaves and the tall dry stalks flanking the deer represent two stages in the life of frostweed (Verbesina virginica), the plant that you’ve seen do its magic ice trick when the weather gets cold enough here in the fall.
© 2015 Steven Schwartzman