Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Field of white, May delight

with 20 comments

From along US 183 in Burnet County’s tiny town of Briggs on May 12th, get a load of this dense prairie bishop colony, Bifora americana, with some firewheels, Gaillardia pulchella, as accessorizing bits of eye-catching red. Three days earlier I’d gone to a prairie parcel in Pflugerville where prairie bishop looked this good in 2020, only to find it paltry there this year. It’s another example showing the vagaries of nature.

* * * * * * * * * *

Imagine a couple born one day apart celebrating their 100th birthdays and 76th wedding anniversary.
You needn’t just imagine it.

© 2021 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

May 22, 2021 at 4:36 AM

20 Responses

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  1. I loved your description of the fire wheels as accessorizing bit of red – as soon as I saw your post, they really struck me as the perfect complement to this lovely field of white.
    Thanks for sharing the very charming article about the couple – what a wonderful story of a long life together!

    Birder's Journey

    May 22, 2021 at 7:05 AM

    • The linked article mentions the husband’s “smart dress sense.” That’s the opposite of unfashionable me, who almost never thinks in fashion terms, but the word accessorizing popped into my head, so I went with it. I found some other kinds of wildflowers in the prairie bishop colony, too, but the red of the firewheels stood out the most.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 22, 2021 at 7:19 AM

  2. Loving those pops of red/orange in that sea of white. Great shot, Steve!


    May 22, 2021 at 9:23 AM

    • It was exciting to find that sea of white. Naturally I took lots of pictures as I walked around in it.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 22, 2021 at 9:28 AM

  3. Gaillardia pulchella is also called Ariana Sun? They were called that in the arboretum here but the scientific name was blanked out.

    Alessandra Chaves

    May 22, 2021 at 12:59 PM

  4. I’ve found numbers to vary, in smaller ways, with lady’s slippers and trillium this year. They are there but not in as many numbers as previous years. Of course they are never in the profusion you show here.

    Steve Gingold

    May 22, 2021 at 5:22 PM

  5. Beautiful meadow shot, Steve!
    Coincidentally, my post today has a similar title 🙂

    Eliza Waters

    May 22, 2021 at 7:38 PM

    • Ah, great minds, right? And yes, this meadow was well worth our 40-mile drive to get to it. I’d actually headed up there because someone on facebook reported good firewheels there, but the prairie bishop was better. It was also welcome because I’d seen plenty of firewheels in the Austin area but not a really good colony of prairie bishop.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 22, 2021 at 8:45 PM

  6. This is such a crisp, refreshing image, and such a nice contrast to the rain and gloom that’s predominated here for days. I’m heading out tomorrow just to see what I can see. I doubt if I’ll find any fields of flowers, but I might get lucky, and there’s only a 30% chance of rain.


    May 22, 2021 at 8:22 PM

    • We’ve had a rainy week here too, with several rounds today and a 70% chance in the forecast for tomorrow. I managed to get some shooting in yesterday morning before the rain came down. As for the prairie bishop shown here, it was the only really good colony of that species I’ve seen this year.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 22, 2021 at 8:49 PM

  7. The fire wheels are a beautiful contrast to the expanse of white.


    May 22, 2021 at 8:34 PM

    • The red was a welcome break in all that white. I also photographed some yellow wildflowers in the expanse of white but they didn’t show up nearly as well as the red did.

      Steve Schwartzman

      May 22, 2021 at 8:51 PM

  8. Beautiful Steve .. with the odd fire wheel pop 🙂


    May 27, 2021 at 2:23 PM

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