Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Archive for May 26th, 2022

Two atypical bluebonnet views

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It’s well past the season for bluebonnets now, but back on April 19th we were still hunting for colonies of Lupinus texensis. As part of our search we checked out a new place, Shaffer Bend Recreation Area, which borders the Colorado River a little east of Marble Falls in Burnet County. Drought* had dropped the river low enough that some bluebonnets came up in sand which I assume would normally have lain underwater. You see one of those bluebonnets in the top picture.

I was reminded of bluebonnets more recently when, as I walked through a temporarily remaining** piece of the Blackland Prairie in the southern fringe of Pflugerville on May 23rd, I noticed a couple of straggly stray bluebonnets barely still flowering. Much more common at the site were brown bluebonnet pods well on their way to drying out. Some even formed little radiating clusters: compare the one below to the green clusters above.


* For some strange reason, just about every occurrence of the word drought these days is in the phrase drought conditions. I have news for writers and people who speak on television: a drought is a condition. There’s no need to tack on the extra noun conditions—any more than there is to speak of inflation conditions, poverty conditions, or hunger conditions. People suffer financially during periods of inflation, not inflation conditions. They try to rise from poverty, not poverty conditions. If they fail, they may die of hunger, not hunger conditions.

** This is the property on Heatherwilde Blvd. where I was so sorry to see construction begin in 2021 and put an end to the dense wildflowers there each May. A rear portion of the property hasn’t yet been torn up, so I was able to enjoy it for at least one more spring, even if drought has kept the floral count well below average. (It could at least have suppressed the chiggers, but unfortunately it didn’t.)


© 2022 Steven Schwartzman




Written by Steve Schwartzman

May 26, 2022 at 4:30 AM

Posted in nature photography

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