Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Central Commerce

with 16 comments


My only commerce on Central Commerce Dr. in Pflugerville on September 7th was with wildflowers. In particular, part of the yard of a seemingly closed business along that street had filled with a densely flowering colony of partridge peas, Chamaecrista fasciculata. Look at all that gorgeous yellow.

© 2016 Steven Schwartzman


Written by Steve Schwartzman

September 18, 2016 at 5:00 AM

16 Responses

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  1. It’s a wonderful flower, and finding a colony only multiplies the beauty. I finally came across a few partridge peas a week ago, and you were right when you told me that, once I’d seen them, I wouldn’t confuse them with the hairy cowpea (Vigna luteola) any longer.


    September 18, 2016 at 6:35 AM

    • I don’t recall ever before seeing so many partridge pea flowers in one place. I’m pleased you made the acquaintance of some last week. With regard to them and the hairy cowpea, Gertrude Stein could have added: yellow isn’t yellow isn’t yellow.

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 18, 2016 at 6:50 AM

  2. And she would have been right. This time of year brings us whole tapestries of yellow, shimmering from lemon yellow to old gold. Ordinarily I’m not that much of a fan of yellow but I must admit, in great sweeps like this it is stunning. In Peoria we’d see colonies of this but I seldom see it up this way.


    September 18, 2016 at 7:32 AM

    • “Whole tapestries of yellow”: a good phrase. For decades yellow has done a good job of convincing me to take it as my favorite color—assuming I could ever settle on such a nebulous thing as a favorite color. Now you too have heeded yellow’s call in the guise of this partridge pea colony. (It’s hard for me to resist the wordplayer’s call and think about all the flowers of this species you used to see in Pea-oria.)

      Steve Schwartzman

      September 18, 2016 at 7:41 AM

      • Oh, now every time I think of my erstwhile home I will think of it in that way!
        By the way, I cannot get my camera to recognize true blue. I have 2 plants blooming together right now and it is stunning~Great blue lobelia and mist flower. But the pictures come back insipid mauve or just plain white. What do you recommend?


        September 18, 2016 at 7:54 AM

        • In a photo-editing program you can globally or selectively adjust the colors in a picture to make them more true-to-life. For years I’ve been using Photoshop, which is expensive. I don’t have experience with other photo-editing programs, but inexpensive and even free ones are out there. I did a search just now and found some:




          Another alternative is to get a newer and better camera, but then there goes more money.

          Steve Schwartzman

          September 18, 2016 at 8:13 AM

          • Ok, a better camera perhaps. My phone is so much better than the digital camera I had, but I would like to upgrade. It will be worth it no doubt.


            September 18, 2016 at 5:23 PM

            • I hear there are some great all-in-one cameras now (as opposed to those with interchangeable lenses) that are small and light. I have no experience with them, but there’s a site with thorough reviews of models at:


              Steve Schwartzman

              September 19, 2016 at 6:43 AM

              • Oh, this is just what I needed~thank you! I thought perhaps the blue perception was a case of my going out to photograph under incorrect lighting conditions, which is why I mentioned it. But you think a better camera would be able to do it?


                September 19, 2016 at 7:29 AM

                • Hard to know what caused the non-true-to-life colors you were getting, but a new camera would offer so many other advantages in addition to more-natural colors. Of course even a fancy camera may make things look different from the way we see them, but no two people see a given thing in quite the same way anyhow.

                  Steve Schwartzman

                  September 19, 2016 at 7:35 AM

                • Oh, sure, I understand that but with my old Minolta I would get such reliable results, assuming the film developer knew what they were doing, that I still expect that.


                  September 19, 2016 at 7:38 AM

              • Whoa, just checked out some prices. I had no idea. There seems to be quite an astonishing leap from my $200 point and shoot, my $500 phone camera, and the real cameras!


                September 19, 2016 at 7:37 AM

                • I think there are less-expensive models that are still good, but you’d have to do research to find out which ones get good reviews.

                  Steve Schwartzman

                  September 19, 2016 at 7:42 AM

                • Right. I went first to the one that had the gold rating and had quite a shock. When I went back to look again I see there is a Canon Eos that looks like it would do the job for right around $1,000. An investment, for sure, but probably worth it. And my camera shop might be able to kit me out with a good used one.


                  September 19, 2016 at 7:48 AM

                • The models in the EOS Rebel line are relatively small and light for interchangeable-lens cameras. A new model comes out just about every year, so you can sometimes get an unused camera of a previous model for a low price. Even a Rebel will still be larger than an all-in-one camera, however. If price is a primary consideration, online stores like B&H and Adorama often have the lowest prices, and I believe they don’t charge sales tax to Illinois residents. Look at this, for example:


                  The price seems to involve a rebate that expires at the end of this month. The page is offering me free expedited shipping to Austin and would probably do the same for you in Illinois.

                  Steve Schwartzman

                  September 19, 2016 at 8:09 AM

  3. […] a comment this morning about the picture of a dense partridge pea colony, MelissaBlueFineArt spoke of “whole tapestries of yellow, shimmering from lemon yellow to old […]

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