Sunday, April 17, 2011

Wildflower Pilgrimage

This weekend was the annual Wildflower Pilgrimage at the Arc of Appalachia Nature Preserves. The weather has been cooler than normal of late, which delayed the bloom of the Redbud until now. Redbud, Cercis canadensis is putting on a great show in southern Ohio. These knockout flowers are unmistakable as one travels down the roads draped in purple.
The Dogwood, Cornus florida is flowering later than usual as well. And while it is in full bloom along the Ohio River, the back roads of Shawnee boast half open flowers in hues of yellow and cream. It makes and altogether lovely contrast, especially as seen along Pond Lick Run. This stream always produces some of the best birding spots, this day being no exception. Three Black-and-white warblers squeaked like rusty pulleys in the trees overhead.

Dwarf Larkspur, Delphinium tricorne and Blue-eyed Mary, Collinsia verna

The most heart-stopping flower display was taking place on The Bluffs at the Ohio River. The winding, narrow path weaves through the largest display of Dwarf Larkspur I have ever seen. Add to that Blue-eyed Mary, Wild Hyacinth, and drifts of Virginia Bluebells: heaven on earth.

The Arc of Appalachia does and amazing job of preserving and protecting their properties, without over managing or over developing. I look forward to seeing more of their preserves.

My friend John Howard gave the Saturday night keynote program on Orchids. He did a fine job of helping us sort out those confusing Spiranthes and his program was filled with his amazing photography. John is knowledgeable in so many areas, from butterflies, flora, salamanders and other most anything else that crawls or creeps. He'll be leading a trip "Streamside" for Flora-Quest.

And as this picture shows, we found a couple of doozies crawling around! More on that later.

1 comment:

  1. That is the most fantastic field of larkspur & blue-eyed Mary! Occasionally we get a good bloom of blue-eyed Mary along a creek near here. Awesome!