Friday, March 27, 2009

Spring, Glorious Spring

There aren't enough words to describe my wonderful spring afternoon hike at Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve, in next door Oldham County, Kentucky. Well, a picture is worth a thousand words, so here goes...
This wildflower is called Twinleaf. I would have named it Lungleaf were the choice mine.

Yellow Trout Lilly - oops, they go to bed early, so I'll have to go back to get one wide awake.
Ah, yes. Here's one that is open. See the difference?

How about some Scrambled Eggs, aka Yellow Corydalis. I love the common names! They are so much fun.

Wood Poppy, not found in the woods this time, but in our backyard where my husband planted it last year. We are installing a babbling brook (technically a "pondless water feature") and will be searching for hardy Kentucky natives to plant around it.
And for the category of Most Tenacious Tree, the award goes to this.... Well, I'm not sure what sort of tree it is, except mostly dead. You can't stop a determined tree though. As long as one branch lives, the tree lives.
False Rue Anemone. I love trying to figure out how these plants, or birds for that matter, got their names. Sounds like some botanist thought this was the real Rue Anemone, and got called to task for misidentifying it. Isn't an anemone a sea creature? And Rue is French for street, right? Looked up the etymology and it says "wind flower" or "daughter of the wind."
Photos of wildflowers are like photos of birds in at least one respect - it's hard to tell how large or small the flower really is. Photographers like to take close ups to show as much detail as possible. You can't tell that this Sessile Trillium is less than 3 inches tall. I thought it was just budding, but Tavia Cathcart (direrctor of the nature preserve and author of a book on wildflowers) says it doesn't open as much as other trilliums, and won't get any larger.
The birds sang joyously in the trees. Above my head the Chickadees challenged each other, and I hummed "Dueling Chickadees," like dueling banjos. This pert little Titmouse came when I pished at him. Pete Dunne must be right. This guy was just very curious about what in the world I was up to.
Of course, the Bluebirds of Happiness swooped around the Mahan Mansion, softly twittering to each other. And how about the Meadowlark, singing from the top of a tree for a change...

This is much more fun than basketball, even if the University of Louisville is ranked #1 in the nation. Does that make me unpatriotic?


KatDoc said...

ooh, I missed Twinleaf - thought it was Bloodroot till I read your caption. I need to go out on a wildflower hunt myself.


Arlene Ripley said...

It was nostalgic looking at your lovely photos of all those plants I left behind when we moved from Maryland a year and a half ago. And those titmice and bluebirds......almost made me teary-eyed!