Wildflowers and a Dove

04Jun07

As far as I can tell this is a species of lupine. Narrowing it down however takes the kind of talent that I just do not have. It is probably either Tail-cup lupine (Lupinus caudatus) or Big-leaf lupine ( Lupinus polyphyllus)  I’m am quite sure it is a lupine species but beyond that I’m stumped! Well whatever it is, it’s a large plant and I love that “candy-striper” look to the petals.

This is a very common sight to bears and my twin daughters. They love eating these berry’s all summer long and eat us out of “woods and forests” (in lieu of house and home) long before the bears decide to munch the berries in our backyard. This is the flower of a thimble-berry plant. (Rubus parviflorus) I insist you try one if your confident you recognise the plant! They are fabulous. When I get to the end of the season I’ll try to knock my daughters out of the way long enough to photograph the berry and share it with you all.

Normally I would claim someone planted this flower however, when I look, they are all over my backyard. If someone did bother planting these tiger lilies (Lilium columbianum) on twenty acres then they are indeed the kind of person who has a lot more energy than I! So the flower must be native since they seemed to have blossomed everywhere. (To my personal delight.)

And last but certainly not least my hubby and I started wandering in a roadless area up on the mountain. It’s not that the cowboys over here aren’t trying to create roads – they are – however determined park rangers are doing everything they can think of to keep it as roadless as possible. They’ve dug deep ditches so even the most determined jeep can’t run through it without the potential of turning over. We meandered down this path and ran into this Indian Paintbrush. I have a hard time (again) identifying the different species of the Indian Paintbrush. In this case I think it’s the Magenta Indian Paintbrush The “petals” are unmistakably pink which threw me off pretty good. (Castilleja parviflora var. albida or oreopola?) I must emphasise again I’m no expert so don’t quote me!

Here is another one of the flowers in case anyone who is an expert wants to take a crack at identification.

This is the mourning dove that wandered into what we like to call our lawn. Now we call it this with tongue in cheek because as you can see it’s a tad bit sparse for a lawn. However, the birds do not seem to be offended with our lack of lawn care and hop up in the area quite a bit. The mourning dove (Zenaida macroura) really sounds like an owl and many times their calls are confused with an owl. (Okay what I meant to say is…  I’ve done it many times.) I wish I could have gotten this guy in flight – they make a grand exit! When their tail feather span out and it’s quite a sight to behold.

Alright that’s enough for the day – maybe too much – however, I’ll shoot up more birds the next time I post.

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7 Responses to “Wildflowers and a Dove”

  1. Beautiful, Beautiful!

    Marvellous photos, keep up the good work!

  2. 2 montucky

    Those are great shots! The lupine is really pretty. I’ve never seen that color before: around here they are all blue.

    You’re right about the thimble-berry being delicious. My wife always claims the first ones she sees. I remember my kids when they were small having thimble-berry juice running down their chins.

    I’ve also not seen the pink paintbrush. It’s elegant!

    I haven’t seen wild tiger lilies here either, but the cultivated ones are very prolific. We started out with a half dozen in one flower bed, and this year there were about 50. My wife dug them up when they were just coming up and put them in her greenhouse. She’ll try to sell them in a few days. We don’t have any in bloom yet though.

    I have also liked the doves and their haunting call. There are several that nest around here and they’re always welcome visitors. Interestingly, they’re also very plentiful in the Arizona desert.

  3. Ooh, I’ve wondered if Thimbleberry was edible – I’ll have to pick one next time I see them in fruit!

    You’re very lucky to have Tiger Lilys growing in your yard, cool! I’ve only seen a couple of Lilium, and none were anywhere near home.

    I’ve encountered pale pink paintbrush too – I’ve all but given up on sorting them out, though – there are way too many, and they’re way too similar! Bully for you for making the attempt and getting some good candidates!

    And what a lovely lupine you have there – I’ve never seen anything like it! I do agree that it’s (probably) a lupine, at least, as long as it has lupine-like leaves in a pinwheel sort of arrangement.

    Looks like your MoDo either just landed or was just about to take off in that last photo. They’re pretty common here too.

    Great stuff!

  4. Hi Narziss, thanks for your kind compliments. I stopped by your site and I really enjoyed the dialogue and the topics you cover. I’ll certainly stop by again. You have a very interesting site!

  5. Hey Montucky,

    The lupine was a tricky guess, I’m pretty sure I’m in the ballpark if not the at the right seat. :o)

    I noticed that the tiger-lilies (at least here) have smaller blossoms, about the size of a baby’s fist, than the ones you would get in the store. They are still as gorgeous but little! Initially I had thought someone planted them but wow, no way! They are really just covering my backyard and the mountain!

    To be honest that was the first time I had seen a mourning dove, my grandpa would say, “listen it’s a mourning dove….” so I was familiar with the call but until this guy wandered into my yard and I looked him up I was stumped. Usually (I think) in my experience they are more shy than this guy was. He seemed as happy to get to know me as a trained pigeon. odd… but hey who knows what nature is going to throw you? I was thrilled he stopped by.

    …as thrilled as you stopped by. Your always a welcome “sight” too!

  6. Hi Adam!

    The lupine leaves were exactly like your stating just like the purple ones – the only significant difference I saw was this grew in one large cluster. I’m not sure what the significance of that means – or even if I made sense there. Like with the purple ones they seem like individual plants whereas this seems like a cluster of plants all woven together. I did dig thru all the local plants that were categorized as “elongated cluster flowers” and the only ones that looked this way was the lupine – except color.

    I’m thrilled to hear you’ve seen the pink paintbrush too – I thought my mind was playing tricks.. and then the camera too. Then as you mentioned looking these up.. no way. After I comment here I’ll dig into your site and look over yours. I only had a few plants to take photos of and I’d love to see yours!

    The dove was spooked a bit. It was really funny we have a small kitty and the bird is about twice her size. So she was focused on a dark eye’d junco – she jumped over the railroad tie to capture the little bird – the junco flew away and then she came face to face with this dove. She jumped back – the bird fluffed to get even bigger and I was just giggling on the porch while the cat ran off as fast as she could!

    Thanks again for visiting! Oh yes, eat the thimbleberries they taste wonderful! Okay off to looking at your paintbrush! Viewing your photos always feels like such an indulgence!

  7. Thank You!


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