Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Golden groundsel doing its thing

with 32 comments

How about a dose of yellow from golden groundsel (Packera obovata) at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center on February 3rd? Now that we’re well into the month, other native wildflowers have begun to make their presence known in Austin.

© 2020 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

February 23, 2020 at 4:35 AM

32 Responses

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  1. This resembles Senecio to me. Just look at that bright, cheery face. I have no flowers to report yet, but the snow is in retreat and I awoke to a robin this morning so things are looking up.


    February 23, 2020 at 8:24 AM

    • This species used to be classified as Senecio obovatus, so the resemblance you saw is more than coincidental. Happy spring, when it finally arrives in northern Illinois. We’ve had a week of temperatures 10 degrees below average for this time of year, though still well above what you’re experiencing.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 23, 2020 at 9:49 AM

      • Yes, and it sounds like a snowstorm is heading our way. Still, the tulip leaves are poking up, and the cardinals are singing.


        February 25, 2020 at 8:08 AM

        • Even here the overnight temperature into tomorrow morning is predicted to dip down to 32°.

          Steve Schwartzman

          February 25, 2020 at 9:11 AM

          • It has been surprisingly cold all over this winter. Several of our storms seem to have originated out of your fair state, which I believe is highly unusual. Hope you still have a coat or two!


            February 27, 2020 at 8:03 AM

            • Yes, I have the same long, well-padded jacket with a hood that I’ve used every time I’ve gone out to take frostweed ice pictures. This morning the temperature outside our house got down to 34°, close to the freezing that was predicted.

              Steve Schwartzman

              February 27, 2020 at 8:32 AM

  2. The golden groundsel even if it is only a beautiful image would be a welcome sight in our Arrow Lakes region still the grip of winter.

    Peter Klopp

    February 23, 2020 at 8:35 AM

    • Winter? What’s winter? Actually we’ve gone through a week of temperatures 10 degrees below average for this time of year in Austin, though that’s still way above what you’re experiencing.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 23, 2020 at 9:51 AM

  3. And what a thing it does. And what a thing you do.

    Michael Scandling

    February 23, 2020 at 12:10 PM

  4. My little patch is almost there–buds a’budding! Beautiful photo, but the model is gorgeous, too.


    February 23, 2020 at 12:29 PM

    • I wonder why this plant was weeks ahead of yours. Whatever the reason, happy buds and flowers to you.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 23, 2020 at 5:21 PM

  5. It’s lovely, Steve! 🙂


    February 23, 2020 at 1:44 PM

  6. I like this time of year when blooming things start to appear.


    February 23, 2020 at 2:37 PM

  7. Very pretty. And it looks as though a little bug has found a resting place in a bed of golden goodness.


    February 24, 2020 at 4:25 AM

  8. Uh-oh! It’s time for me to start trying to sort out all these groundsels again. I saw in Eason’s book that this one’s known as round leaf groundsel, so there’s a clue. The buds look a little different to me in this photo. They haven’t changed, of course; maybe I’m looking more closely. They certainly do glow, for such small flowers.


    February 24, 2020 at 5:15 PM

    • Of the three species in Austin (two now moved from Senecio to Packera), fortunately the leaves are different enough that I can pretty easily tell which one I’m looking at. You’re right that the flowers seem to glow, and that’s a welcome sight in the early spring (according to climate rather than calendar).

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 24, 2020 at 6:34 PM

  9. How nice to see such a bright yellow. Thanks for the reminder that it’s spring in some places despite the calendar’s disagreement.

    Steve Gingold

    February 24, 2020 at 6:21 PM

    • As you know so well, spring in Texas Usually begins in February, no matter how people have arbitrarily divided the year into four equally long seasons. One version of a joke about Texas is that the four seasons here are December, January, February, and summer.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 24, 2020 at 6:37 PM

      • That’s a good one. Not being from or having been to Texas it’s new to me.

        Steve Gingold

        February 24, 2020 at 6:39 PM

        • It’s a complementary version of the one about the seasons up by you: June, July, August, and winter. (Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but you get the point.)

          Steve Schwartzman

          February 24, 2020 at 6:48 PM

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