Friday, June 28, 2013

In Praise of Roadside Weeds

All spring and summer and into the fall, I drive many miles criss-crossing the region to seek out rare and beautiful native plants.  And along every road, in generous abundance,  are blooming many other plants, none of them rare, few of them native, all of them beautiful.  Yesterday, struck by this glorious mix of Daisies, Maiden Pinks, and Birdsfoot Trefoil, I pulled  my car over to pay these flowers some of the closer attention they deserve.

Could any other flower live up to its name as well as does the vividly pink Maiden Pink (Dianthus deltoides)?

Another very aptly named flower is the butter-yellow and eggyolk-orange Butter-and-eggs (Linaria vulgaris).

What horticultural strain of flower could fill a meadow as generously as does the sunny-yellow Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima) ?

Far more subtle in its coloration is the jade-green and snowy-white Bladder Campion (Silene vulgaris), with its swollen calyx that reminds me of fine Japanese porcelain.

Although many plants of Common Milkweed (Asclepias syrica) are already blooming and filling the air with a heady fragrance,  I was drawn to admire the pink-velvet beauty of this cluster of buds.

"Heavenly" is the only word to describe the way Chicory (Cichorium intybus) mirrors the color of the sky with its cerulean blooms.

I was not the only admirer of Chicory flowers. This iridescent-winged hoverfly (Toxomerus geminatus) with its intricately patterned abdomen was feasting on the flower's pollen while I was feasting my eyes on the beauty of both the blossom and the bug.  I love to see how the Chicory's  styles curl back after pushing their way through the dark-blue pollen-filled stamen tubes.


Bill and dogs said...

Your photos are always wonderful, but these were even more outstanding than usual,even magnificent. And it's a blessing to see the beauty in roadside weeds. Most people drive by without even noticing.

Caroline said...

All flowers that say High Summer is here! If those aren't a picture of home in the Champlain Valley, I don't know what is! I love my prairie wildflowers, but these are pictures of home. :o)

Ellen Rathbone said...

So lovley. Yes, we sometimes get over snobby with our desire for natives and dislike for non-natives, but as long as they aren't invasive, it certainly doesn't hurt to appreciate the common non-natives that have made this country home. Kinda like us. :)

The Furry Gnome said...

Oh, I love it! So similar to my own post on 'Flowers in the Field' earlier this week. Sometimes those we dismiss as 'weeds' are just so beautiful. Your blooms seem to be a bit further ahead than ours here, and I've never seen that beautiful pink.

Jacqueline Donnelly said...

Thank you, dear readers, for all your kind comments and for sharing your appreciation of our beautiful roadside weeds.

Momo said...

Your photos and expressive writing-simply beautiful. The hoverfly picture is truly stunning!

suep said...

that last photo takes my breath away ! O to see the world from an insect's view, it must be staggering