Hunting for Wildflowers: How Quickly Things Change - Ld
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Hunting for Wildflowers: How Quickly Things Change




Happy Monday! I hope you had a lovely weekend, and a wonderful mother’s day if you are a mom, or celebrated with that mom-figure in your life!


Here in Minnesota, the weather was forecasted to rain, but it ended up being a pretty nice weekend overall, with only the occasional rain shower in the evening. As many of you know, it is one of my goals this year to photograph a showy lady slipper, Minnesota’s state flower, but I also have a mini/side goal to photograph as many wildflowers as I can. The wildflowers in the southern half of the state are really starting to take off, and I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to get out and photograph them.


Last week I was looking for a place to go, and was looking at the Minnesota DNR naturalist programs as a way to clue me in about where wildflowers were blooming. Let me explain. Most of the state parks offer different classes that you can sign up for. Some include geocaching, photography, fishing, nature hikes, and wildflower hikes. I noticed that there was a wildflower hike at Interstate State park coming up, so I figured that it seemed like a good indication that there were wildflowers blooming. For the record, I wasn’t looking to join the wildflower hike; not that I wouldn’t, I just would be that really annoying person who holds up the group and/or gets lost from the group because I would be too busy paying attention to taking pictures of wildflowers.


Interstate State Park is about an hour north of the Twin Cities, right in the city of Taylor’s Falls. It’s a beautiful area; right along the St. Croix River. One of my good friends has an awesome travel blog that I would highly recommend checking out, and wrote a piece on Interstate State Park and the surrounding areas based on our trip this past weekend AND she featured my photography! Check it out here.


The first weekend I went up, the flowers were just starting to bloom. Pictures are below. I saw four different kinds; white trout lily, dutchman's breeches, bloodroot and anemones (not pictured).

Dutchman's breeches (the flowers looks like little upside-down britches!)

Dutchman's breeches

Dutchman's breeches

Dutchman's breeches

Bloodroot bud (has a very distinctive leaf, big white flower, and is one of the first flowers to bloom in the spring in Minnesota)

Bloodroot

White trout lily bud (the flower hangs upside-down, the leaf looks like the side of a trout, and is shaped similar to a trout)

As I was taking pictures that day, I noticed that the trout lilies were COVERING the forest floor, but hadn’t bloomed yet. I immediately decided to come back a week later to see the difference.


Here are the pictures from the second week.



White trout lilies

Dutchman's breeches with unknown purple flower

White trout lily and dutchman's breeches

Wild violet (a flower I remember from growing up)

Bellwort (unique flower structure, perhaps like a bell in a bell tower)

Bloodroot (see distinctive leaf)

Not only were there WAY more flowers as I had expected, there were more species blooming. Wild violet, wild ginger (not pictured), bellwort, and an unknown purple flower (I’m trying to ID it!) were now visible. Additionally, some of the patches that were blooming the first week I was there were no longer blooming. In only one week! I was truly amazed.


It would be fun to continue to go up to the same park week after week to document the changes. However, there are other parks I want to visit, to try and get as much variety I can this spring.



Have you taken any spring wildflower pictures yet this year? What is your favorite wildflower? Your favorite flower? Where have you seen an amazing display of wildflowers?


I'd love to hear about it!


Happy Photographing!


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