Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Huisache daisy colony

with 30 comments

Along Priest Rd. off S. Loop 1604 southwest of Elmendorf on March 27th we found this extraordinary colony of huisache daisies, Amblyolepis setigera. According to Garden Style San Antonio, “Huisache daisy is so called because it often grows in thick stands under huisache and other chaparral bushes, forming a solid blanket of gold.” Often isn’t always, and in this case I don’t recall a huisache tree anywhere in sight. In the United States these daisies grow only in Texas; they’re also found in Mexico. Mixed in with the huisache daisies in this stand you’ll notice some verbenas, and in the background the ubiquitous Indian paintbrushes, Castilleja indivisa.

The huisache daisy has appeared only once before in these pages, in a closeup with a tumbling flower beetle.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 6, 2019 at 4:47 AM

30 Responses

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  1. I remember that other image of the huisache daisy because of the tumbling flower beetle. A couple of years later, I found such a beetle on a skeleton flower, and was able to identify it, thanks to your photo. I know I’ve seen fields of these flowers on the old Spicer ranch south of Kerrville. I can’t find the photos now, but I know where to look for the flowers when I go back. I like the patch of verbena as a complement.


    April 6, 2019 at 8:43 AM

    • I also liked the verbena as a complement and I took some other pictures where the verbena flowers are closer and therefore play a larger role in the mix. I chose to show this photo because its greater scope includes the paintbrushes in the distance. If you can get back to that ranch soon, the slightly cooler temperatures compared to south of San Antonio might mean the huisache daises would be at their peak in the Kerrville area.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 6, 2019 at 9:10 AM

  2. It isn’t always easy to make a good composition with a sea of color, as you have here. The touch of blue and the orange in the background are just right accents for this amazing colony of daisies.


    April 6, 2019 at 9:03 AM

    • While you were writing your comment I was replying to Linda’s and said that of the many photos I took of these huisache daisies I chose to show this one because it includes the paintbrushes in the distance along with the verbenas mixed in.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 6, 2019 at 9:13 AM

      • I figured it was no accident. 🙂


        April 6, 2019 at 9:17 AM

        • At the same time, I was kept from showing even more of a vista because that would’ve meant including buildings and roads.

          Steve Schwartzman

          April 6, 2019 at 9:20 AM

          • There is a prairie restoration within view of the Chicago skyline that I’ve seen photos of. I love the juxtaposition of that, and would like to paint it one day. As you and I have said, it would be nice if more buildings were beautiful.


            April 6, 2019 at 9:38 AM

            • I hope you’ll paint it. Your mention of the Chicago skyline reminded me that I posted two pictures of it from the Indiana Dunes:


              Steve Schwartzman

              April 6, 2019 at 10:08 AM

              • Stunning! I don’t know how I missed them but am so glad you pointed me to them now.
                I’m not exactly sure where the prairie I mentioned is, but I hope to find it this summer. I agree, I think it would make a cool painting.


                April 7, 2019 at 10:28 AM

                • When I was posting every day it was easy to miss things. Better late than never, as they say. I was really happy with that sunset picture, though I had to make a bunch of adjustments in Photoshop to bring out all the tonalities in the image.

                  Steve Schwartzman

                  April 7, 2019 at 11:43 AM

                • It came out really well.


                  April 7, 2019 at 12:42 PM

                • I think so.

                  Steve Schwartzman

                  April 7, 2019 at 1:08 PM

  3. Had to put my sunglasses on for this one. 🙂


    April 6, 2019 at 9:51 AM

  4. Nice work, Steve.

    Jane Lurie

    April 6, 2019 at 10:41 AM

  5. Once again, I am stupefied by the quantity of flowers your state, and others, has in one spot that we do not.

    Steve Gingold

    April 6, 2019 at 4:16 PM

    • This spring parts of California are keeping parts of Texas company. I was fortunate to hear about the floral bounty south of San Antonio and go there three times in two weeks.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 6, 2019 at 7:01 PM

  6. Beautiful!!


    April 6, 2019 at 9:23 PM

  7. It really does look like a superbloom.


    April 8, 2019 at 6:43 PM

    • It is a superbloom. Someone told me that he heard on a San Antonio station that these were the best wildflowers for that area in 10 years.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 8, 2019 at 7:14 PM

      • Sweet, like Southern California, except with more interesting flowers. . . or more interesting to those of us who are unfamiliar with them.


        April 9, 2019 at 9:26 AM

  8. It sure is a solid blanket of gold … 🙂


    April 12, 2019 at 3:31 PM

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