Wildflower Moments Spring 2016

Firewheel I went for a little walk to visit the May wildflowers and I brought these photos back. Year to year, they vary greatly and this year was a slow year for Bluebonnets and a great year for the Indian Paintbrush. It as a year for the reds, I suppose. And the yellows, too. These get called Indian Blankets and Firewheels (Gaillardia pulchella). They are rampant this year and have lasted beautifully. They seem to be tough little blooms.

Indian Blanket

SallyThis is Sally, our Golden. She is a sweetheart and loves to run and follow and lead and frolic. So anytime I head out on a wildflower excursion, she joins me. This virtually guarantees that it will not be a wildlife excursion, however. She flushes or scares or chases everything before I get into lens distance. If I want to look for wildlife, she has to stay back at the house. But for wildflowers, she is a welcome companion.

GreenthreadThese are called Greenthread (Thelesperma filifolium). I’m fond of them because they have these fragile looking, long, spindly stems. But anything that grows in Clay County, be they flowers or people are tough. These are no exception.

Scotch Thistle Bloom

These are the blooms from a giant, fairly horrible plant called a Scotch Thistle. It is a giant of a plant and must be controlled to an extent, however, its bloom fascinates me. How such wonderful colors can come from such an ominous looking pod is beyond me. It is like an artichoke. So great, but a sort of intimidating plant.

Engelmann DaisyThis is an Engelmann Daisy (Engelmannia pinnatifida), I believe. They are prolific by the roads on the ranch and they are simple and lovely and strong. It’s one of my favorites.

Open Bluebonnet Seed Pod Bluebonnet Seeds

Due to weather or timing or temperature, who knows, this was not a big year for my Bluebonnets. I took a great deal of photos of the ones that came to the party, but this is my favorite couple of photos. Why? Because this is the magic. This is why you guard your Bluebonnet territory. These are the pods that grow at the base and the blooms on mine were long gone before the pods dried. They are just beginning to burst and I had to seek out my plants by the leaves to find them. These little seeds are the next generation.

(Look mom, these are your grandkids, right?)

MushroomsI think these are either Horse Mushrooms or Meadow Mushrooms, both of which are edible. Did I eat the beauties? No. Because, I’m not sure. And, I like living. But the pink gills were so lovely. I’m fairly sure I also have a good population of oyster mushrooms that come out to play in the winter, but again, until I’ve learned a little more, they are not going into the pan. But, they do make me very happy.

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