Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘purple

Away from Bull Creek

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Away from Bull Creek but still in St. Edward’s Park on June 11th I found a bunch
of horsemints, Monarda citriodora, in a clearing. I aimed straight down at one.

It was morning, and the corona of dewdrops atop the horsemint hadn’t evaporated yet,
as you can see more clearly by clicking below for an enlargement of the center.

If you’d like a reminder (or never knew) what a horsemint looks like,
here’s a more-conventional view of one from the side:

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 28, 2019 at 4:39 PM

But I wasn’t finished with basket-flowers for 2019

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I did much of my basket-flower (Plectocephalus americanus) photography for this year on May 26th, which provided the pictures you saw of a colony and an individual flower head. On the morning of June 9th, as part of a mostly cultural jaunt to Dallas and Forth Worth, we sauntered up Flower Mound’s flower mound, where basket-flowers were still putting on quite a show. (Presumably the season was the reason, with spring coming a little later to the area 200 miles north of Austin than it does to central Texas). Some of the basket-flowers I saw there seemed different from what I’m used to in central Texas. Among the differences were baskets that seemed somewhat metallic, almost as if made with copper or brass.

Several of the basket-flowers struck me as more bundle-like than usual as they opened.

Some had florets of a richer purple than I recall seeing in Austin. Naturally I welcomed the novelties.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 24, 2019 at 4:32 AM

Basket-flower in two stages

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On May 26th, before I photographed the colony of basket-flowers (Plectocephalus americanus) in Pflugerville that you’ve already seen, I’d stopped on Burnet Rd. by the old Merrilltown Cemetery in far north Austin to check out the basket-flowers I’ve come to count on each spring stretched out along a roadside ditch and at the edge of the property next to the cemetery. While wind made my work difficult, I did get some good pictures of a developing basket-flower “basket” in front of a fully open flower head of the same species. I don’t recall making a portrait like this one in my two decades of photographing basket-flowers, so the picture pleases me in its own right and because of its novelty.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 5, 2019 at 4:44 AM

A new oddity

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On March 10th I went back to the lot along Balcones Woods Dr. where I’d photographed the stemless evening primrose flowers you saw here not long ago. The highlight of my latest stop was a strange ten-petal anemone flower (Anemone berlandieri) that had two central fruiting columns instead of the one that’s normal.

Sometimes flower parts get doubled as part of the phenomenon called fasciation, which I’ve documented in a bunch of posts over the years, but this time I didn’t see any of the noticeable flattening or distortion or elongation that fasciation typically brings with it. To continue investigating, I returned to the site on March 16th. By then the richly colored sepals had fallen off and dried out or blown away, so I had to search for several minutes to find the plant again. While the new evidence shown below argues against fasciation, what caused the rare splitting of one seed column into two remains a mystery. (I call this conjoining rare because even a local expert like botanist Bill Carr says he’s never seen an anemone do this.)

Written by Steve Schwartzman

March 19, 2019 at 4:34 AM

First native spring wildflower

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Click to enlarge.

On January 28th I discovered a colony of flowering anemones, Anemone decapetala, along Talleyran Dr. This is truly a wildflower of the coming season, in contrast to the several holdovers you’ve seen on and off here for the last couple of months. Some anemones are white, others purple, and some a mixture of the two colors, as shown here.

Anemone flowers usually stay close to the ground, so in making my portrait I couldn’t avoid the patchy light beyond this one. At least I managed to keep that patchwork pretty much out of focus.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 30, 2019 at 4:42 AM

Another wildflower in winter

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Gulf vervain (Verbena xutha) west of Morado Circle on December 25, 2018.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 26, 2019 at 4:30 AM

A differently shaped and colored wildflower in December

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In case you thought yesterday’s picture of bright yellow camphorweed barely counted for wildflowers in December because the flowering came only three days into the month, here’s a picture of a droplet-covered prairie verbena (Glandularia bipinnatifida) on the misty morning of December 18th at the Riata Trace Pond.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 24, 2018 at 6:59 AM

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