Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘Davis Mountains

Closer and closer looks at Arizona ash trees turning bright yellow

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Arizona Ash Turned Yellow by Cliffs 9118

Above is a closer look at some Arizona ash trees, Fraxinus velutina, turning bright yellow along TX 17 between Balmorhea and Fort Davis on November 19. Once again cliffs serve as a backdrop.

Below is a still-closer look at this kind of tree on the following day along TX 118 just north of the town of Fort Davis.

Arizona Ash Tree Turned Bright Yellow 9572

And here’s an even closer look from the same stretch of road as the last.

Arizona Ash Leaves Turned Yellow 9575

I’d better stop closing in and just close.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 23, 2015 at 5:19 AM

More fall foliage

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Arizona Ash Tree Turned Yellow 9152

The best fall foliage on our Trans-Pecos trip came from Arizona ash trees, Fraxinus velutina. While driving along TX 17 from Balmorhea to Fort Davis on November 19th I spotted this Arizona ash that had partly turned yellow by the side of a creek with dramatic cliffs behind it and the blue of the clear sky reflected in front of its own reflection.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 22, 2015 at 4:57 AM

Alligators in arid Trans-Pecos Texas?

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Alligator Juniper 9649

Okay, not real alligators, but alligator junipers, Juniperus deppeana, whose rough and patchy bark reminded people—probably people who came from the bayou country in far east Texas—of the skins of those reptiles. I photographed some of those atypically barked junipers on November 20th along TX 118 in the mountains northwest of Fort Davis. The picture below even gives the alligator an eye (and also puts an end, I think, I hope, to the recent spate of zoomorphic and anthropomorphic images).

Alligator Juniper Trunk Detail 9653

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 17, 2015 at 5:39 AM

Muhly seed heads late in the afternoon

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Muhly Seed Heads 9166

Late in the afternoon on November 19th near the high point on the Skyline Drive in Davis Mountains State Park I photographed these backlit grass seed heads. Muhly is short for Muhlenbergia, which is what I take the genus to be, but several species grow in the area and I can’t be more precise.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 3, 2015 at 5:39 AM

A picturesque pecan

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Large Pecan Tree Turned Yellow 9093

I pulled over along TX 17 between Balmorhea and Fort Davis on the afternoon of November 19 to have a look at this large and picturesque pecan tree, Carya illinoensis, which ranks as perhaps the yellowest one I’ve ever seen. Having a bright blue sky to contrast with the differently bright tree didn’t hurt.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 2, 2015 at 3:49 AM

View from Skyline Drive

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Sotol with Seed Stalk 9185

Late in the afternoon on November 20th we turned off into Davis Mountains State Park and drove to the top of Skyline Drive. The prominently pointy and sawtooth-edged plants you see here, including the one whose seed stalk is so tall, are sotol. Two species of Dasylirion grow in this area, but I’m afraid I can’t tell you which one this is. Look beyond the sotol to the land stretched out below and you’ll get a good feel for the vastness and aridity of west Texas.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 1, 2015 at 4:46 AM

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