This slideshow is an example of just a few of the many wildflowers that I captured this year here in Jefferson County Indiana. They were all photographed in Clifty Falls State Park earlier this spring.
Some of the best wildflower displays I have ever witnessed came from our own backyard and if giving a chance you should get out and experience the wonderful natural diversity that this area has to offer.
Clifty Falls State Park, Splinter Ridge FWA and Big Oaks NWR are just a few places to go and view the beautiful display of wildflowers that inhabit our home.
Here is another example of a really cool little wildflower that grows at Clifty Falls State Park, and it is Squirrel Corn, very unique structure in this little gem and it makes for some really great photography.
According to the Kentucky Native Plant Association..
The foliage of this early spring wildflower is easily mistaken with the foliage of its close cousin, Dutchman’s Breeches (D. cucullaria). The easiest way to tell the plants apart is via the flowers, but the leaves of squirrel corn are typically shorter and there is one compound leaf per flowering stem compared to Dutchman’s breeches which has longer leaves and there are typically two leaves per flowering stem. In addition, squirrel corn leaves have a tendency to have a more “open” appearance. Like many members of the fumitory family, these plants are highly toxic and make for good garden plants because mammals, even deer, do not like to graze on them. The leaves appear early in the growing season and completely disappear by mid-May but they can form dense colonies when established in the garden. The plants are typically about 6″ tall and squirrel corn gets its common name from the underground food storage structures that look like corn kernels. The flowers are quite distinctive and look like small hearts and the plant is named Dicentra which refers to the two spurs on the flowers and canadensis means from Canada.
This plant is easy to grow in the garden and it is one of those species that must be inter-planted with ferns or later blooming species because it is so ephemeral in nature. Squirrel corn had great significance as a Love Charm to the Mennominee Indians and a young man would throw the flowers to his intended love or chew the roots which gave a perfumed smell in the face of the woman causing her to follow him from that time forward. The Onondaga called this plant the “Ghost corn” believing it was “food for the spirits.” Like trilliums, the seed of this group is dispersed by ants because the seeds contain a fatty substance called elaisome, which is highly relished by ants. At the nest the elaisomes are eaten and the seeds are left to germinate. The plants are primarily pollinated by bumblebees. Historically the plant was used as a tonic and for use in treating syphilis.
So there is really good description of the wildflower and now for a couple of images. Thanks for stopping by and taking a look !!
Took a long hike out to one my favorite photography spots just outside of Madison Indiana the other day in search of a subject besides a human one for once. Came across some wonderful scenes and subjects which I will share in later posts, but one of the first subjects I photographed, which was in abundance was the common Cutleaf Teasel.
The Teasel is a great subject to photograph during the summer it attracts hosts ranging from Butterflies, Hummingbirds and other insects, and then during the fall many bird species use the thistle as a food source.
Because of the plants structure though the winter is my favorite time to photograph it, the teasel makes for interesting comps with the snow clinging to the towering stalks, and I was able to capture a couple of totally different moods in the subject that day.
The first image was captured as the sun was setting and filled the scene with this lovely warm light which made for a great contrast against the snow. The second image was more of an isolated one and I converted it to black and white to give it a darker mood.
I think that d0ing this shoot in the winter it is the only way to have shown such a contrasting view of this subject and it really helps my photography to capture and share both of them with you.Thanks for stopping by and taking a look !!
Sitting here listening to Duran Duran feeling like I am a million miles away from everything, missing being in the mountains with the warm moist sensations of the lush forests of wildflowers that blanket the mountainside. Sitting here enduring another dark cold Indiana winter evening wishing the landscape would turn green and bring back the vivid color display that breathes life back into these old bones…Turning 50 sucks lol !!
Ok I am sorry it was a poor attempt at humor, were not talking Gilligan’s Island, were talking Moths as in Skippers !!
Most of my macro work has been done with wildflowers and other domestic flowers but last summer I began experimenting with photographing butterflies and moths. It was a poor attempt mind you but at least I think I am heading in the right direction.
Shooting flowers is a piece of cake compared to shooting bugs and other little things that don’t comprehend what the phrase sitting still means, I know sometimes wind can be a factor for wildflowers, but things that fly off at the slightest movement can really test your photographic and mental patience.
As an example the Little Skipper I posted here only to took nearly 100 images and about a full hour to get right, I followed him way longer than he deserved, and that hour could have been spent doing something a little more concrete with my life….cutting grass or reading a book maybe.
But as you can see I think it worked out alright, except for the soar knees,ticks and frazzled nerves. It was probably a good thing I shot this little critter where no one could see me or I think I would have looked rather foolish chasing and cussing at this little guy. But after all the complaints I actually think I enjoyed myself with this new aspect of my photography….now if I can just get that tune out my head lol !!!