Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘flowers

Olive = juniper

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On September 2nd, while walking on a streamside path along the upper reaches of Bull Creek, I stopped to photograph a butterfly that entomologists classify as Callophrys gryneus and that people call a juniper hairstreak or olive hairstreak. Although what I know about butterflies weighs less than one, it seems to me that the russet color on this individual was more saturated than average for the species.

If you’re wondering about the flowers, which I paid much less attention to than the hairstreak did because I needed to maintain my focus on the moving butterfly, they were Eupatorium serotinum, known as late boneset and late thoroughwort.

For a closer look at the butterfly, you can click on the excerpt below from a different frame to enlarge it.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

September 22, 2018 at 4:21 AM

Yellow and purple

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In the woods along the upper reaches of Bull Creek on September 2nd I found this bright and brightly lit flower head of a Silphium radula, known as roughstem rosinweed.

The daubs of contrasting color beyond the rosinweed came from a few flowers on a purple bindweed vine, Ipomoea cordatotriloba. Below is a side view of one of those flowers in its own right and in focus.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

September 19, 2018 at 5:13 PM

Emerald Lake shore

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A year ago today we (and many other people) visited Emerald Lake in British Columbia’s Yoho National Park. The smoke from forest fires dulled views of the surrounding mountains, as you see above, so for some pictures of the lake I aimed closer in. As an example of that approach take the second photograph, which plays up the tall trees while still allowing the color of the lake to come through.

The low plants along the water in the photograph above are sedges. Below is a close view of one taken from the shore looking back the opposite way. In “La Belle Dame sans Merci” Keats mentioned this type of plant:

O what can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge has withered from the lake,
And no birds sing.

 

And to counteract the pallor of any pale loiterers among you, here are some fireweed flowers (Chamaenerion angustifolium) that also grew close to the shore.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

September 7, 2018 at 4:46 AM

Snow at the hottest time of the year

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On August 17th on the Blackland Prairie in northeast Austin I photographed some snow-on-the-prairie (Euphorbia bicolor) just a few feet from the partridge pea you saw here last time.

From a distance, many people incorrectly assume the green and white bracts are part of the flower; actually those patterned bracts are specialized leaves. Even the lobed white “collar” around the stamens isn’t part of the flower, nor are the smaller involucral glands those lobes are appended to. In spite of appearances, this flower has no petals. For a much closer look, click the icon below.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 24, 2018 at 4:49 AM

White false indigo

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From Garden in the Woods in Framingham, Massachusetts, on June 12th, here’s white false indigo, Baptisia alba, seen in a reference photo (above) and in a more aesthetically satisfying portrait (below). Thanks to horiculturist Anna Fialkoff for identifying many of the plants I photographed there on June 12th.

Turns out I’d taken pictures of this species two years earlier in Illinois. Last year I portrayed a more-colorful species of Baptisia in Kansas.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 29, 2018 at 4:38 AM

Small rhododendron

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At Garden in the Woods in Framingham, Massachusetts, on June 12th, I saw budding and flowering specimens of the shrub known scientifically as Rhododendron minus and in common English as small rhododendron.

All parts of the plant are poisonous, so if you encounter it in person, look but don’t taste.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 26, 2018 at 4:44 AM

Mountain laurel

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Over here we’ve got Texas mountain laurel. At the Garden in the Woods in Framingham, Massachusetts, on June 12th I finally got to see the mountain laurel, Kalmia latifolia, I’d heard about for years. Names to the contrary, neither of the mountain laurels is in the laurel family: the Texas one is a legume, while Kalmia belongs to the Ericaceae, or heather family.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 22, 2018 at 4:47 AM

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