Sunday, April 19, 2009

Trailside Trillium

As much as I love the prairie, I must confess to a special fondness for woodland wildflowers. They are among the first plants to flower, making a showing before the leaves of the trees overhead come out to shade them, and they are ephemeral, only lasting for a few weeks or even only a few days. To catch them in sequence and to catch each at their peak demands that you get out there and walk your favorite trails at least a couple times every week, and that you keep your eyes open for the latest changes. Wildflower springtime is a series of ever more beautiful surprises of delicate yet glowing light as it reflects off the crystalline petals. Get down close to them, so that you can see the grains of pollen. Don't be afraid to touch their jeweled coolness. Enjoy the fragrances of the musky decomposing leaves. Listen for the peeping of frogs, the buzzing of insect, the calls of birds. Spring wildflowers mean that the season is fully upon us and summer cannot be long away.

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