This weekend I was able to get out on both Saturday and Sunday – no work requirements interfered. Unfortunately, my trip to Happy Canyon Road was not too fruitful because of a very strong wind.
A little beyond the shooting range, on a small promontory facing southish, there were many shooting stars and chocolate lilies. They were somewhat on the dry side because of the exposure to both sun and wind. I did not even try shooting the waving shooting stars, and got one semi-reasonable chocolate lily against the sky, where the skylight turned the chocolate color dark red.
(California Poppy – March 8, 2008)
Buckbrush ceanothus was blooming as profusely on the Happy Canyon side of the mountain as the other side. In the riverine area, many trees were budding – big-leaf maple, California bay, red willow (I think) – and others were sprouting new leaves. I drove to the “end” of Happy Canyon and back; seen were California poppy, more chaparral currant; miner’s lettuce, prickly poppy, California manroot and unfortunately many patches of non-native henbit closer to built-up areas.
(Collarless Poppy, Sky Lupine – March 9, 2008)
On Sunday, I visited one of my favorite canyons that usually has a variety of flowers blooming in sequence over spring and summer, and is a good place to see butterflies. It has a number of different habitats along the length of the reasonably short road. Last year it was as dry as a bone, with nary a bloom in one of the worst droughts in many years.
This year, once again, flowers have returned with collarless california poppy and sky lupine leading the way. Several butterflies were seen on both days, but they were flitting very fast in their low-to-the-ground horizontal scanning for mates mode. I guess one will have to wait for the vertical dancing of found mates followed by rest, to get a chance to photograph the butterflies.
(Sky Lupine from the top – I love the patterns in nature – March 9, 2008)