It has been ages since I participated in Gail's Wildflower Wednesday. So, last week when Kevin, Bart and I went to the trails at the Royal Botanical Gardens, I was on the hunt for anything wild, petalled and ready for its close-up. Coming back with my images after this walk, I realized how out of practice I was, and why I need to participate a little more often!
Just off the parking lot and into the beginning of the woods I found this pretty pink flower. Definitely from the rose family, but with flowers that are more like raspberries. As close as I can come, and I welcome correction from any and all, is Rubus odorata. And the next time I'm on the trail, if the fruit is still there, hopefully I'll be able to get a better i.d.
Only 10 feet away from the first lovely flower, I found this bodacious plant. For all of you having a head shake and a giggle, yes I know, I'm probably borderline going to be banned from any further WWs. I was having trouble finding it in any of my wildflower books, so I opened my Publication 505 Ontario Weeds and there it was on page 214 of publication 505 Giant Ragweed - Ambrosia trifida. Further digging on the net showed a gal in Texas with one that was 16 feet tall, this one in contrast is about 6 feet tall. See how important participating in these great events are. Now I know what Giant Ragweed looks like, and so do you!
This was tricky to find too, until I did my web search (big, yellow, daisy-like, wild), and presto - guess whose site came up? Gail's. This was one of her 2014 Wildflowers of the Month. It is Silphium perforliatum. It is growing in a damp bright area and is over my head.
I always find it interesting to find big leaf plants that the bugs aren't too fussy on.
A little Daucus carota, Queen Anne's Lace.
The water levels seemed a bit lower considering all the rain we had had. Not sure if they've adjusted the water levels?
When you leave this point, you head up a hill. I'd said to Kevin that I'd hoped to find Herons. Little did I know, I'd find 5! Long lens and silly branch in the way, but if you play Where's Waldo for a moment, you'll find all of them.
At the halfway point we stopped to have a look at the waterlilies Nymphaea odorata - one of the best years ever for blossoms.
More blossoms here - the much maligned, though not so much of a problem now - Lythrum salicaria and a pretty patch of white Eupatorium.
Bulrushes....and lots and lots of green.
On the return around the pond, I was able to see one of the parent Blue Herons - until I Googled, I had no idea that the immature birds were white.
Close to the ground Prunella vulgaris.
And another bird I hadn't seen before a Red Bellied Woodpecker. (yes, even though it has a red head - it is not a Capital "R"ed Capital "H"eaded Woodpecker)
And then, (theme song from Jaws) the most dreaded late summer-Canadian moment. That Primal Scream Time when you see your first leaf changing and you realize that Summer really is on the way out, and those cool nights and days are fast approaching and you have to cherish every last pre-frost day.
Maybe we'll be lucky and have a long stretch of great weather. The oracles at Environment Canada say we'll have warmer than normal weather up until November. And, if they're right, I'll be back, no excuses, ready for the next several months of Wildflower Wednesday.