Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography


with 11 comments

Wild Onions and Brown Bitterweed Flowering 3558

On May 6th I drove out to a portion of the Llano Uplift close to and then inside of Inks Lake State Park. I found better stands of wild onions, Allium canadense var. hyacinthoides, than I’d seen in years. I also found colonies of brown bitterweed, Helenium amarum var. badium. Here you see the two species growing in adjacent and even partly interpenetrating colonies.

Moving off to the side some distance and zooming out, I portrayed a different combination of wildflowers. In addition to more of the brown bitterweed there were Indian blankets (Gaillardia pulchella), prickly pear cactus (Opuntia engelmannii), and yellow stonecrop (Sedum nuttallianum). The trees were mostly Ashe junipers (Juniperus ashei).

Wildflowers on the Llano Uplift 3652

© 2016 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 1, 2016 at 5:00 AM

11 Responses

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  1. Nice work, Steven.


    June 1, 2016 at 6:44 AM

  2. They’re like naturally occurring horticultural gardens…which of course, they are.

    Steve Gingold

    June 1, 2016 at 1:15 PM

    • Positive: I don’t have to do any work to create or maintain them.
      Negative: I have to travel to see and photograph them.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 1, 2016 at 1:41 PM

  3. Love this .. Nature having fun


    June 1, 2016 at 2:22 PM

  4. Pointillism comes to my mind when I look at the second photo.


    June 1, 2016 at 4:12 PM

    • I can see why that came to mind. I imagine the Pointillists took their original inspiration from scenes in nature like the one in the second photograph.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 1, 2016 at 5:15 PM

  5. When I first found this spring’s wild onions in the ditches surrounding our wildlife refuges, I think you mentioned you hadn’t seen colonies of them for some time. I’m glad you found these. They’re quite wonderful, especially in combination with the bitterweed.

    I’m fond of the naturally-occurring mixes nature provides, too. I’ve never thought about it before, but species separation is one reason landscape plantings often look so artificial. Around here, I’ve seen landscape workers busily plucking “invaders” out of sections of flower beds: not weeds, per se, but flowers that don’t fit the color scheme. No such plucking has happened here!


    June 3, 2016 at 6:42 AM

    • Not long ago it was prairie promiscuity. Now the promiscuity has continued with an uplift.

      Allium canadense comes in two varieties. This is the one I don’t often see, but when I have seen it it’s usually been in impressive colonies.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 3, 2016 at 6:58 AM

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