Patterns in Nature

I started off thinking this post was going to be about the fact that sunflowers make two different kinds of flowers, which I think is really interesting. When we think of sunflowers, we think of the big showy flowers around a central disk. But the disk is made up of flowers, too! And actually, theContinue reading “Patterns in Nature”

Hummingbird wants that flower…

Some days everything, including my camera, just clicks. Yesterday was one of those days. This female Broad-tailed Hummingbird tries to get nectar from American vetch.   But she can’t quite get her beak into the drooping flowers. Animals don’t usually sit still and work this hard to get something. It just makes them too muchContinue reading “Hummingbird wants that flower…”

Need a break from the heat

Denver hit an all time high temperature of 105o F (40.5o C) on Thursday. Fires rage throughout the West. Politics are just as heated. I need a break from the heat. Although I couldn’t get to the high country recently, I still have some good photographs from my trip up to tundra last month. TheseContinue reading “Need a break from the heat”

Alpine Flowers

A couple of years ago, when I was giving presentations for my book (A Natural History of Trail Ridge Road: Rocky Mountain National Park’s Highway to the Sky), a member of the audience asked me where she could find wildflowers in the alpine tundra. I was a little nonplussed, because you can find wildflowers inContinue reading “Alpine Flowers”

Great Wildflower, Part 2

From our great spring crop of blooms, ( this continues to be an outstanding season for wildflowers. Every time we begin to dry out, we get a rainstorm that waters the plants. And the flowers just keep comin’. According to the USDA Plants Profile webpage, you can find pink bergamot all over North America.Continue reading “Great Wildflower, Part 2”

Mathematical Patterns in Plants

One of the things that I really enjoy about nature is that it produces proofs that it obeys natural laws in the most unusual — and beautiful — ways. This spring and early summer I ran across three examples of math in plants. Scorpianweed, like most plants in the hydrophyllaceae family, has a flower stalkContinue reading “Mathematical Patterns in Plants”

Project BudBurst Begins in Jeffco

Several months ago, I responded to an add in the local papers for volunteers for Jeffco Open Space. At their open house, they had many different options — desk worker, naturalist, trail maintenance. All these were possibilities, but the option I signed up for in the in was that of plant monitor for Project Budburst.Continue reading “Project BudBurst Begins in Jeffco”

Yellow flowers brighten November days

Do the grey skies of November have you down? Are you missing the colors of fall’s leaves? Don’t despair. There is one plant that is still blooming after hard frosts have killed everything else – rubber rabbitbrush. Rubber rabbitbrush, a light green shrub about three feet tall, blooms in late fall – September through November.Continue reading “Yellow flowers brighten November days”