Saturday, April 29, 2017

Flower for the Day Bluebell 4-29-17

These trail bluebells are wondrous wildflowers. 
This common bluebell is exquisite.


As are the Virginia Bluebells. 

                 The Forest    
Fern and bluebell thrive.
Dense trees forging green shelter.
Footpaths meander.
Mystery at every turn
Gnarled roots display nature's art.

Forest canopy
Dappled sunlight and shadow
Rustling undergrowth
Spring is stirring steadily
Epiphany of nature.                                                           

Copyright © Delice Arleen Skelly | Year Posted 2015 

Friday, April 28, 2017

Flower for the Day Lilac 4-28-17

At the Lake house we have a small lilac bush. What it misses in size it makes up in persistence and
a powerful and pungent scent. Lilacs (Syringa vulgaris) are in the olive family, Oleaceae.

Walt Whitman's long poem, one of my favorites, is about the death of Abraham Lincoln. Here  are a few of its 16 stanzas.

When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd
When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom'd,
And the great star early droop'd in the western sky in the night,
I mourn'd, and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring.

Ever-returning spring, trinity sure to me you bring,
Lilac blooming perennial and drooping star in the west,
And thought of him I love.

In the dooryard fronting an old farm-house near the white-wash'd palings,
Stands the lilac-bush tall-growing with heart-shaped leaves of rich green,
With many a pointed blossom rising delicate, with the perfume strong I love,
With every leaf a miracle—and from this bush in the dooryard,
With delicate-color'd blossoms and heart-shaped leaves of rich green,
A sprig with its flower I break.

Passing the visions, passing the night,
Passing, unloosing the hold of my comrades' hands,
Passing the song of the hermit bird and the tallying song of my soul,
Victorious song, death's outlet song, yet varying ever-altering song,
As low and wailing, yet clear the notes, rising and falling, flooding the night,
Sadly sinking and fainting, as warning and warning, and yet again bursting with joy,
Covering the earth and filling the spread of the heaven,
As that powerful psalm in the night I heard from recesses,
Passing, I leave thee lilac with heart-shaped leaves,
I leave thee there in the door-yard, blooming, returning with spring.

I cease from my song for thee,
From my gaze on thee in the west, fronting the west, communing with thee,
O comrade lustrous with silver face in the night.

Yet each to keep and all, retrievements out of the night,
The song, the wondrous chant of the gray-brown bird,
And the tallying chant, the echo arous'd in my soul,
With the lustrous and drooping star with the countenance full of woe,
With the holders holding my hand nearing the call of the bird,
Comrades mine and I in the midst, and their memory ever to keep, for the dead I loved so well,
For the sweetest, wisest soul of all my days and lands—and this for his dear sake,
Lilac and star and bird twined with the chant of my soul,
There in the fragrant pines and the cedars dusk and dim. 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Flower for the Day Wild Geranium 4-27-17

I found this wild geranium an a trail hike in Innsbrook, Missouri. It is Geranium maculatum. Its other names are spotted
geranium,  wood geranium, alum root, and old maids nightcap. This one was growing right out of a limestone boulder in the shady forest.
The flowers have five violet purple petals and ten stamens.

  "The 'Amen!' of Nature is always a flower."   ~Oliver Wendell Holmes    

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Flower for the Day Spring Beauty 4-26-17

Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica) is a miniature perennial wildflower which has been blooming for more than a month. The individual flowers bloom for three days, although the five stamens on each flower are only active for a single day. They overwinter through a corm with roots. Corms are  bulb-like underground storage organs. Spring Beauty  spreads by re-seeding.

The stem is light green. The basal leaves are linear or linear-lanceolate, slightly recurved and fleshy. There is a single central vein along the length of each leaf. The stem terminates in a floppy raceme of flowers. Each flower is about 8 mm. (1/3") across when it is fully open, consisting of 5 petals, 2 green sepals, 5 stamens with pink anthers, and a pistil with a tripartite style. The petals are white with fine pink stripes. The flowers open up on warm sunny days, and close during cloudy weather or at night. They are more or less erect while open, but nod downward while closed. There is a pleasant floral scent. 

Spring Beauty by Mary T. Hoffman

Spring Beauty: a humble flower,
A pleasure to behold;
Delicate and unassuming,
Blooming on forest floor
Where nature's treasure lies in store
For those who seek in quiet places
A rare reward.

(Written May 2007)

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Flower for the Day What bloomed last week-end II 4-25-17

  White azaleas in the side yard  bloom later than the purples in the front.


I love the subtle beauty of the Lily of the Valley.

The iris are starting to emerge.

This is wigelia:

The first of many Sweet William.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Flower for the Day What bloomed over the week-end I 4-24-17

Its exciting in the garden. Here are just some of what bloomed over the week-end. I'll get into more detail about them
in the coming weeks.

This iris is always the first of the new year.

The allium are up in purple and white.

This is a doble blooming iris.

My favorite peony:

Virginia bluebells:

Friday, April 21, 2017

Flower for the Day Hesperis 4-21-17

With the spring rains the wildflowers emerge. Hesperus matronalis is an herbaceous plant in the mustard family, Brassicaceae. It 
lined our trail on our easter walk and is coming up now in the wildflower garden. It has many common names including dame's rocket, damask violet, dame's-violet, dames-wort, dame's gilliflower, night-scented gilliflower, queen's gilliflower, rogue's gilliflower, summer lilac, sweet rocket, mother-of-the-evening and winter gilliflower.

It is often mistaken for phlox which blooms later in the year.


Rosebud lips and soft copper eyes

Waited on by fireflies

Crowned with fern and laurel bits.

She's Eo's sister...Hesperis.

Nicasio Orlando 

Don's Blog An Easter Trail Walk 4-16-17

On Easter we walked on a beautiful nature trail in the Meadows area of Innsbrook Missouri.
It parallels a small branch of Charrette Creek. It is of the finest Missouri woods.
There are limestone boulders and a cliff along a gradual trail which has only one steep spot.

The trail came to a wonderful bench

where it was  peaceful

by the silent creek.

There were many spring wildflowers including this wild geranium which
was sprouting out of a rock.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

An Easter Trail Walk 4-16-17

On Easter we walked on a beautiful nature trail in the Meadows area of Innsbrook Missouri. The path is a quiet wooded gentle trail
which parallels a small branch of Charrette Creek. There are
limestone boulders and a cliff.There is one steep area which can be tricky if it has rained.

The trail came to a wonderful bench

where it was  peaceful

and overlooked the silent creek.

There were many spring wildflowers including this wild geranium which was sprouting out of a rock.

My Easter Butterfly 4-16-17

Jan has been painting butterflies  for months and on Easter morning she emerged from her chrysalis transformed into one.

Flower for the Day Ajuga 4-20-17

This year has been very successful for ajuga. This perennial ground cover has been coming up everywhere and flourishing. This is Ajuga reptans. It is also called bugleweed, ground pine, carpet bugle, or just bugle. It is in the mint family (Lamiaceae). 
The flowers can grow quite tall.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Flower for the Day Amaryllis 4-19-17

My amaryllis is blooming later each year. It is quite mature (the bulb is over thirty years). The size of the blooms remains the same. Caring for it is almost seamless so I continue to put it
in the dark in the winter and bring it out and start watering it in February and it summers outside.

                                                    I AM AN AMARYLLIS

Hippeastrum is my proper Latin name 
I am so spectacular I simply put others to shame 
From a large bulb my green shoots will grow 
I dwarf the other plants I love to be on show 
With my elevated position I look down on other plants 
They are tiny in comparison and look like little ants 
When my tip emerges it contains my superior flower head 
My blooms can live for three weeks yet other flowers are dead 
I am the king of flowers 
I can produce three flower stem 
My trumpets are enormous, people stand and gaze at them 
I have no scent for you to smell when I am flowering 
The intensity of my blooms would make it overpowering 
Once I've finished blooming I deserve a two-month rest 
Then I will re-flower for you and show the world I am the best! 
My chosen flower - Amaryllis meaning pride 
Contest:- Picture yourself as a flower – Andrea Dietrich

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Flower for the Day What's Blooming Now? 4-14-17

Late last week we had really great rain and this is what is blooming now. Jan put the flowers in a little vase.

Clockwise from the  right there are two different types of columbine, Lily of the Valley, Spanish 
hyacinths, an ox-eyed daisy, and pink phlox. Welcome.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Flower for the Day Azalea 4-11-17

My azaleas are always in a state of flux.  They will not be ignored. Right now they are fully budded out and are beginning to bloom.
budded out and are beginning to bloom. The buds began about two weeks ago.

They bloomed over the week-end and today they have really popped.

They are exquisite.


Spring breeze comes with drizzle,
Moistens here and there.
Red and white and many colors,
Azalea blooms everywhere.
The leaves are Small and the flowers are delicate,
They mix well densely and charming.
The beauty of the azalea looks like
the goose's feather brightened by fire flaming.

Poem by Charles WOO

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Flower for the Day Least Bluet 4-8-17

I love miniature flowers. I found these small flowers in the meadow behind the house. I have lived here for more than 35 years and have never seen them before. The entire meadow is a carpet of these tiny flowers. There were just too many to see. Imagine a whole field of them.

They are least bluets (Houstonia minima).  They are also called tiny bluets and star violets.
They are  a precursor to spring. The flowers are about 1/4 inch wide and grow at the top of a slender stem
that usually branches only once near the middle. The  petals (40 can be purple blue, deep violet or white and they have a  reddish center and a yellow throat. These  are pale violet.

A closer look reveals the delicate colors.

These tiny flowers are very uniform in size, height , and color. The excitement of seeing them
out of nowhere will allow me to look for them every spring from now on - right about the time that
Spring Beauty appears. The least bluet  has a large number of common names including Quaker Ladies, Quaker Bonnets, Little Washerwoman, Blue-eyed babies, Wild forget-me-not, Eye Bright, Angel Eyes, Nuns, Innocents
Star of Bethlehem, Venus' Pride, and just plain bluets.

Monday, April 3, 2017

A Fall 3-18-17

I  walk near the Lake House in the late afternoon. I start by climbing up to the road and heading north. It is hilly and cool. It has rained recently but the road is fairly dry. It is peaceful and there are no cars on the road. I reach my regular turnaround point and head back. I am  feeling pretty good about my body.  I am blending  with my surroundings. I follow a different route back and still it is quiet. No one is on this trip with me.

I take a short cut as I near the house crossing some huge stepping stones. I put my left foot on the lower edge of a flat stone which is at a 35 degree angle up and then step with my right foot. I am launched flat to the right as my right foot slips inward to the left knocking out my stable left foot. The fall is not dreamlike or in slow motion. There is no chance to " roll"  into the fall.It is sudden and violent. I land simultaneously on my right hip -  my right wrist -  my right elbow.  My right arm strains out of its shoulder socket. - Luckily I don't land on  my neck and head. There is no sound. In one second  I go from standing to lying on my right side on the hard cold moist mud and moss.
It happens so fast I don't think of looking around and being embarrassed. It actually hurts so much that I have a shocked feeling of weakness. I am instantly sweating in response. I gingerly test  my body and surprisingly the various appendages have some limited mobility. Apparently no hip or wrist or elbow fracture. Can I get up? Not on the right side - maybe on the left. I get onto my left knee and then up all the way. I stand for a moment and take some deep breaths. I walk the 50 yards to the Lake House.

I take my coat off and blood is streaming down my right elbow. I take my shirts off and there is a v-shaped laceration on the end of the elbow. The blood stops with pressure and a small dressing. I begin to feel better as I realize how lucky I was. I make up a story that it is because I have been working out with a trainer for the last 17 years. Or maybe it was fate or luck or the sign of the moon. 

I tell Jan, "I fell." She says, "Do you want to go Home?" I say, "No, I want to see what is going to happen next."
There are still surprises at age 81.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Flower for the Day Celandine Poppy 4-1-17

Celandine poppy (Stylophorum diphyllum) is a native plant that does well in the shade. It is also called 
wood poppy and yellow poppy. Members of the Poppy Family are characterized by their production of latex, which in the case of  Stylophyllum diphyllum is yellow. They will bloom for several months, re-seed in the fall, and the whole stand enlarges each year.

Flowers begin as small hairy buds,

and emerge quickly.

The flowers have 4 yellow petals, 2 sepals, and multiple yellow stamens.

They have a single large stigma.

The stigma is the part of the female organ or pistil that accepts the pollen during fertilization.