Marking the First Day of Spring

Monthalia, Texas ~ Spring, 2019

Nothing says ‘spring’ in Texas like our bluebonnets, and they’ve been celebrating the turn toward this new season for some time. While everyone loves to see them overspreading the fields, it’s fun to find them hanging out with their friends as well. At the Rockport cemetery on March 7, several delightful pairings presented themselves.

Tucked among the Indian blankets (Gaillardia pulchella)
Backed by pink phlox (Phlox spp.)
Paired with woolly globe mallow (Sphaeralcea lindeimeri)
Complementing my favorite white prickly poppy (Argemone albiflora)

 

Comments always are welcome.
Click any image for greater size and more detail.

The Bold and the Beautiful

Spanish dagger bud (Yucca treculeana) ~ Brazoria Wildlife Refuge

No, not that The Bold and the Beautiful. To find Brooke brokering a deal with Ridge, complicating her relationship with Thomas, you’ll have to tune in to daytime television.

Here, there’s only a reminder that spring flowers don’t always arrive clad in pastels.  Not only do their complex forms delight the eye, they often provide masses of eye-catching color.

Scarlet pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis) is an introduced flower that sometimes appears to be scarlet, especially in Europe. In Texas, orange and blue are the predominant colors, and the two often appear in the same group of plants. These are representative of the colonies spreading through portions of the San Bernard refuge.

Lindheimer’s sida (Sida lindheimeri), somestimes known as ‘showy fanpetals’ is slightly larger than the pimpernel flowers, but still small. In the sunlight, its color truly shines.

These are only the appetizers, of course. Sooner than we imagine, Spring’s main course will be served.

 

Comments always are welcome.
Photos can be enlarged by clicking on the image.

Painting With a New Brush

Texas Indian Paintbrush (Castilleja indivisa) ~ Brazoria Wildlife Refuge

Of the three Indian paintbrush I found blooming at the Brazoria refuge on January 6, this was the most vibrant and fully developed, with its small, greenish flowers easily visible among the glowing red bracts.

Like other beloved spring wildflowers, particularly bluebonnets and pink evening primrose, Indian paintbrush won’t begin spreading across the land for another two or three months. Still, it’s not uncommon to find isolated blooms as early as January, and this isn’t the earliest I’ve found. Although somewhat stunted and less colorful, another paintbrush had contributed to nature’s artistry on January 5 in 2018.

Comments always are welcome.