As bright Coreopsis and Firewheel began appearing alongside our streets and highways, my thoughts turned to the Broadway cemeteries in Galveston: always a favorite spot for spring flower photography. Favorable conditions sometimes lead to masses of flowers, as they did in 2020.
This year, generally dry conditions and my own late arrival meant the flowers were more scattered, with many Gaillardia already going to seed and the Coreopsis less dramatically dense than in the past. Still, to paraphrase the old saying, if one bloom closes, another opens, and the opening of a significant number of rain lilies (Cooperia drummondii) was an unexpected treat.
Rain lily flowers gradually open in the evening several days after rainfall and remain open a day or two; areas around Galveston received between one and two inches of rain on Tuesday, April 26, so the presence of blooms three days later wasn’t unusual. I found far more buds than flowers, so another visit clearly is in order.
Finding a pleasing background in an urban cemetery can be challenging. Sometimes, as above, a sidewalk serves the purpose; in the photo below, a brick wall surrounding one of the cemeteries provided contrast for the white flowers.
Being able to position a bloom in front of fading Coreopsis and Gaillardia provided some color, but more than native wildflowers can serve that purpose.
Here, a bouquet of artificial flowers left at a grave frames a rain lily flower and bud: an unexpected but pleasing combination.