Saturday, May 16, 2009

Scenes from the Macro-World - More Ballard Park Flowers

I went down to Ballard Park today to see how the wildflowers situation is coming along. Eureka! The Lily-of-the-Valley and the Canada Mayflower on the Valley Trail are in full bloom and smelling so sweet. Down in the quarry the Solomon's Seal patch next to the Aspen grove is looking beautiful, and in general there are more flowers up and decorating the landscape. Let's go take a look.

Here's the Solomon's Seal down in the quarry, both a close up of some blooms fully opened and a full branch of blooms.

Also down in the quarry, out in the meadow, the Buttercups are up in profusion.

Out on Hazard Rd. and just down a little from the park entrance there is a very swampy area. Growing there are two flowers that I haven't yet been able to identify. If anybody has a clue, let me know. The purple flowers on the left stand about 6 - 8 inches high, and the flowers themselves are about 1/2 inch across. The hanging "bells" on the right are also about 6 - 8 inches high, and the blooms are 1/2 or 5/8 inch long.

Back in the park and walking up the trails, I came across this wonderful patch of Speedwell. This particular spike was perfect for a multi-bloom shot.

Up the South-West Trail a little bit I came to a patch of Indian Strawberry. This is a wild Strawberry species that actually does produce a small, round fruit. Compared to regular Strawberries, though, this fruit doesn't have much of a flavor.

And of course, up the Valley Trail are the glories of May in Ballard Park, the Lily-of-the-Valley (right photo) and the Canada Mayflower (left photo), both in the Lily family. I've never noticed if the Mayflower has a scent or not, but you sure can tell if you're coming up to a patch of Lily-of-the-Valley; the sweet scent of those tiny bell-shaped flowers just draws you right to them.

And to finish out our wildflower walk through Ballard Park, here's a shot of some Strawberry blooms (regular Strawberries this time) along the Valley Trail, promising to provide a tasty snack in the not-too-distant future. If I can beat the birds to them, that is!

© 2009 by A. Roy Hilbinger


  1. Lily of the Valley is one of my favorite flowers. The perfect little bells are so fragrant! You flower photos are always so nice.

  2. I always wondered what Speedwell looked like.

  3. great shots.... I love buttercups...don't see many of them around here although most of the rest are prolific along our trail as well.

    We have thousands of trilliums right now, too.

  4. Awesome pics. You sure do have a good camera and a great eye.
    I haven't seen buttercups since I was a little girl.
    BTW, on Theme Thursday you commented you live in a vacation resort area...How do you deal with the traffic? I live here on City Island in the Bronx. eeek! The weekend traffic keeps me home.

  5. Nice photos Roy, You've got a talent and I hope you are selling some of these great photos to the calendar or greeting card people!

  6. take a hit of some lily of valley for me (or would that be lilies of valley or lily of valleys?)

    I love, love, love this time of year and all the flowers....I forget when we are in other seasons....I have often thought fall is my favorite season, but then all this newness is busting forth and what can I say I get swept away!!

    I hope you have tix for the newport folk life festival....please go up to pete seeger and billy brage and give them hugs for me....I'd be there, but alas it's my pa's birthday aug 3 and when you get to be his age you deserve to have all your offspring around you!

  7. Roy, those are the most beautiful photographs of Lily of the Valley I've ever seen. When I was growing up, my mother grew these along our pathways all around the house. Though small and "shy", their scent is sublime.

    I once was given a flask of a very expensive scent called: Muguet des Bois (French for Lily of the Valley) and I've wished ever since I could afford more... I'm happy though, as the tiny patch I've pampered for years bloomed beautifully this year with the (hopefully) end to the drought.

  8. I swear I can smell the sweetness of those Lily of the Valley. Absolutely beautiful shots.