Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Philadelphia flees to Brenham

with 25 comments


Eleven days ago you saw a great field filled with mixed colonies of Indian paintbrush (Castilleja indivisa) and butterweed (Packera tampicana) in Brenham. From that same April 8th session, here’s a Philadelphia fleabane plant (Erigeron philadelphicus) that was as happy as I was to be in such good company.


❦         ❦         ❦


If you’re like me, you’ve heard of Atlantis, a land described by the ancient Greeks that supposedly sank beneath the ocean. It became the stuff of legend down through the ages, with some people positing its location in the similarly named Atlantic Ocean, while others favor a location in the eastern Mediterranean.

If you’re like me—or at least like me until last week—you’ve never heard of Doggerland, a region that likewise sank beneath the ocean. The difference is that Doggerland, despite its seemingly outlandish name, was real. It existed during and after the last ice age in a large area that eventually sank beneath the North Sea but used to connect what is now Britain with what are now France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, and Denmark.

Over the past century, more and more Doggerland artifacts have been pulled from beneath the North Sea, so archaeologists are slowly learning about the Mesolithic civilization(s) that existed there. You can find out a lot more in Jason Urbanus’s article “Letter from Doggerland.”

© 2022 Steven Schwartzman


Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 21, 2022 at 3:40 PM

25 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. What a nice bit of lovely white with a dab of yellow, in that sea of rich red and green. Nice shot!


    April 21, 2022 at 4:03 PM

    • Not only was it the first Philadelphia fleabane I’d seen in quite a while, it also had such rich red behind it. And then there was the harmony of those disk flowers in the foreground with the different yellow dotted throughout the background.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 21, 2022 at 5:16 PM

  2. Still lives on as a region in the shipping forecast broadcast here several times a day (as Dogger or Dogger Bank).

    • I confess I’d never heard of Dogger Bank before the linked article. Do you think people in Scotland are generally aware that humans lived there for thousands of years?

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 21, 2022 at 5:18 PM

      • I doubt it. In fact I think some of the more passionate Brexiteers might be quite annoyed to know we were once physically joined to Europe and are indeed part of the continent!

        • We could say you’ve offered a dogged reply about Doggerland.

          Steve Schwartzman

          April 21, 2022 at 5:33 PM

          • Indeed! This Dogger is named after a Dutch fishing vessel (I didn’t know that till this conversation prompted me to look it up) but dogger has at least two other meanings which I think are specifically British English. A dogger plays truant from school. I won’t mention the other meaning in polite company.

  3. That’s a sweet little bouquet!


    April 21, 2022 at 7:27 PM

  4. Interesting to hear about Doggerland. I know of ‘Dogger Bank’ off the east coast of England from the shipping forecast that used to be broadcast on the radio.


    April 22, 2022 at 1:53 AM

    • Anabel (The Glasgow Gallivanter) above similarly mentioned remembering the name ‘Dogger Bank’ from shipping forecasts. This American had never heard of it.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 22, 2022 at 4:27 AM

  5. I was surprised to read that you’d not come across this fleabane in a while. Down here, it’s one of our most obvious and most common spring flowers; you hardly can find a spot where it hasn’t set up shop. That’s an exceptionally nice cluster of blooms. I always smile at the contrast between their perkiness and the downward-hanging buds.


    April 22, 2022 at 6:36 AM

    • Erigeron modestus, known as the prairie fleabane daisy, holds sway in Austin. I’ve often photographed it and shown pictures of it here. Perhaps the soil in my area isn’t as favorable to the Philadelphia species; I didn’t even know that the hanging buds are typical of it.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 22, 2022 at 6:42 AM

  6. We have Philadelphia Fleabane in common…although not currently.

    Steve Gingold

    April 23, 2022 at 7:10 AM

    • You’re a lot closer to Philadelphia than I am. The USDA map shows this species in all the lower 48 states except Utah and Arizona—and I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s there, too.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 23, 2022 at 7:33 AM

  7. This photo turned out pretty with the subject right in the middle. I had never heard of Doggerland either. Very interesting.

    Alessandra Chaves

    April 23, 2022 at 8:42 AM

    • For all the photographic admonitions about off-center subjects and the rule of thirds, a centered subject can work, too. As for Doggerland, I don’t know why we’d not heard of it before. But then there are so many things we’ve never heard of. Live and learn, say I.

      Steve Schwartzman

      April 23, 2022 at 8:57 AM

  8. A gorgeous white and yellow pop ..


    April 29, 2022 at 2:51 PM

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: