Photo of the Week – February 8, 2019

It’s cold outside. Not just cold – blustery cold. The kind of blustery cold that takes your breath away unless you turn your face out of the wind. It’s the time of year when people ask themselves why they live in places that get this cold. That’s never been something I’ve fretted about. Seasons feel right to me. I appreciate spring because it follows winter. Winter is also a time to slow down and get things done that are too easily put off during the rest of the year. When going outside is a pleasant option why would you install the new toilet or sort through the overflowing drawer of miscellany in the dining room?

On the other hand, late winter is certainly a time when I start to feel flower withdrawal. It’s not a major affliction, but a real one. Looking at spring flower photos from previous years sometimes helps me, so in case the same applies to you, here are a few spring flower photos from recent years. These are the friends I’m looking forward to seeing in about two months. In the meantime (Brr) I have a drawer to see about…

Wild plum (Prunus americana)
Carolina anemone (Anemone caroliniana).
Ground plum, aka buffalo pea (Astragalus crassicarpus)
Sun sedge (Carex heliophila)
Pussy toes (Antennaria neglecta)
Pasque flower (Anemone patens)
This entry was posted in Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants by Chris Helzer. Bookmark the permalink.

About Chris Helzer

Chris Helzer is the Director of Science for The Nature Conservancy in Nebraska. His main role is to evaluate and capture lessons from the Conservancy’s land management and restoration work and then share those lessons with other landowners – both private and public. In addition, Chris works to raise awareness about the importance of prairies and their conservation through his writing, photography, and presentations to various groups. Chris is also the author of "The Ecology and Management of Prairies in the Central United States", published by the University of Iowa Press. He lives in Aurora, Nebraska with his wife Kim and their children.

6 thoughts on “Photo of the Week – February 8, 2019

  1. Last week I found some Gaillardia pulchella in bloom near the coast. Even though our winter’s not as cold or snowy as yours, it is remarkably cheering to see those first bits of color. I especially enjoyed seeing the sun sedge and pussytoes. Neither is shown in Texas, but both are lovely.

  2. Going to one of those 2 hour classes for retirees here in Milwaukee at our local university- “Phenology in a Changing Climate”. It will be interesting!

  3. Ah, the Pasque flower which we also see up here in Northwestern Wisconsin on the Namekagon Barrens Wildlife area in April just as the snow is slipping finally away! What a beauty popping up out of the dead grasses from last summer. ‘Heralding the coming of spring!’ Our Barrens is like your Prairie and also like my old hometown on the Sonoran Desert of south central Arizona. When spring arrives in the mostly treeless areas it can be spectacular even if subtle.

  4. I looks like you are having good weather for doing woody species control. The days are short, so there is still plenty of time in the evenings for reading and organizing. You should be happy you missed the the worst of the cold that the Chicago region experienced this winter. I wore all the warmest clothes I had to go out for only about 20 minutes. When I got back inside my eyes were hurting and watery. I think they had gotten frost bitten. In the weather the Chicago region received I needed goggles just to go outside.


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