Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Bent but still flourishing

with 20 comments

Four-Nerve Daisy Flower Head Opening on Broken Stalk 7938

Something had crimped the stalk of this four-nerve daisy but it kept growing, gradually curving back upward and even managing to produce the flower head you see here. The only thing different about it from a usual flower head of Tetraneuris linearifolia was that it was a bit flattened instead of circular. I found this testament to survival in the greenbelt north of Old Lampasas Trail on March 15th.

If you’re interested in the craft of photography, you’ll find that points 1, 2, 4 and 18 in About My Techniques apply to this image.

© 2016 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 13, 2016 at 5:09 AM

20 Responses

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  1. Very nice shot!


    April 13, 2016 at 5:19 PM

  2. I know just how it feels. I’m getting my second new knee tomorrow…


    April 13, 2016 at 9:18 PM

    • Now that’s an unusually personal connection. Happy new, as my wife likes to say.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 13, 2016 at 9:57 PM

    • Good luck with the operation, Gary. I don’t envy the recovery experience, although you’ve survived one already so you know what you are dealing with, and hope all goes smoothly. I am sure you are looking forward to walking pain free again. I know a few folks who had both done at the same time. Can’t imagine it.

      Steve Gingold

      April 14, 2016 at 4:05 AM

  3. I always wonder what causes these curves and strays from the straight and tall. They are not usually around to give evidence and I wonder also whether there is something happening within the cellular structure that causes this. Anyways, nice view, sweet warm light and lovely background.

    Steve Gingold

    April 14, 2016 at 4:02 AM

    • I wonder about the causes of crimps and breaks too. We have plenty of deer around here, so they’re likely suspects. I’ve never considered something in the plants themselves being the culprits.

      I like your description of “sweet warm light” and “lovely background.” Spoken like a photographer.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 14, 2016 at 7:13 AM

  4. In addition to the unusual curves, I like the way the “nerves” are highlighted, and the way their green and gold combination is complemented by the background. It may be true, as Frost wrote, that “nothing gold can stay,” but this flower seems to have made quite the effort to do just that.


    April 14, 2016 at 7:45 AM

    • Well said about the daisy’s perseverance. It had a lot of nerve. A cross-section through the middle of a ray flower in this view confirms the four “nerves” in the common name.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 14, 2016 at 8:13 AM

  5. Wonderful image .. We have agapanthus that have the odd misshapen stem. Nature is amazing isn’t it?


    April 15, 2016 at 3:17 PM

    • I see plenty of strange things as I wander about in nature, that’s for sure. I’m glad I caught this one.

      During my month in NZ probably the most common flowers I saw were agapanthus. Too bad they’re not native over there.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 15, 2016 at 4:14 PM

  6. Steven,
    I’m hoping to get your permission to use this image of the four-nerve daisy with a poem it inspired me to write this morning. I’ve already included links to this and a few of your other articles in my post, but I’d love it if I could pair the image with the poem.

    My Small Surrenders

    May 7, 2016 at 12:34 PM

  7. […] into seeing the soft brush strokes of a floral portrait. While the bent stalk of a bright yellow four-nerve daisy (Tetraneuris linearifolia), and the words Steven Schwartzman used to describe its fate, inspired my brain to connect with the […]

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