After what seemed to be the eternal long spring, summer is now heavily imbedded into our daily lives. Highs near to or above 90 F each day with nights barely cooling down to 70 are now the rule. That combined with high humidity levels tops off the reminder of the season we are now in. I took the past week off from work to spend some time around home. Didn’t get in the fishing I wanted as I got tied up in another “creative” project with the building of a new deck around the hot-tub. However, I did manage to get out for a bit on most days to bike and take some pictures. These trips were well worth it as the changing of the season has brought forth an amazing number of new plants to capture and try to identify.
The first picture today of the Harebell or Campanula rotundifolia is a great example of the beauty bursting forth. These were the just the first of many flowers that I almost walked by as I single mindedly was heading for another species I had spotted up the embankment stretching out from the bike trail. But then, there they were just waving in the wind with the Needle Grass and nearby phlox. The carved out ditches are now full of Black-Eyed Susan’s (second picture) as well and together with the Birdsfoot Trefoil, they supply an abundance of yellows in the prairie mix.
I have to post a couple of landscape spreads of the rail-bed ditches to help you visualize the tapestry of creation that lays before me. In the first Prairie Landscape capture above, you’ll find Early Sunflower, Black-Eyed Susan, Birdsfoot Trefoil, Prairie Phlox and Crown Vetch mixed in with at least four varieties of prairie grasses. The second landscape of the Native Prairie Garden shows yet another view down the road a couple of miles. You needed to see these for two reasons. First, it shows I have an overwhelming number of subjects just waiting out there for me. I’m very fortunate in this aspect. One of the most challenging issues is to move slowly and cautiously so as not to step on or disturb the abundance of plant life. Doing so would only spoil the view for the next person or group to come by. Second and most important, for those of you who did not grow up on the prairie or ever live near such an area, these pictures depict an environment that has been restored to show the marvelous, delicate and beautiful ecosystem that was naturally created and thrived in times gone by. For me, I sometimes just have to stop and gaze for a few moments to take it all in. I hope you enjoy. Have a great evening.