Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bloomin' Wetlands

My favorite boardwalk trail through the wetlands is blooming away. Pickerelweed, Pontederia cordata, is a favorite of mine. Are the flowers blue or purple or both? Something I pondered for quite awhile before doing this painting.

When I first started walking this trail, 3 years ago, Pickerelweed was the dominate plant. It now makes a splash of color here and there. Lizard's tail, Saururus cernuus, has taken over. I'm currently working on a watercolor sketch but, it's making me crazy. There are so many leaves intermingled with the blooms that the design of light's and darks is becoming tedious.

Common cattails, Typha latifolia, will eventually choke this entire area. Here's an image from this winter showing the cattail invasion.

They're now very green and close to 9' in height. Wading birds are finding it tougher
and tougher to find open water for fishing. Every now and then I'll see a Great Egret poking around in small pools. There have been a couple of Green Herons foraging in the last couple of weeks and two Woodducks will sometimes flush from the cattails. The decaying trees are supplying Pileated Woodpeckers with food. It surprises me that the small Downy Woodpecker makes so much more noise than the Pileated when pecking at trees!


  1. you had me fooled for a moment! Ha, time laps photos. Lovely opening photo btw! Really great shot of that dragon fly>

  2. Thanks, Lindsay. Painting dragonfly wings are challenging. There's a bumblebee too in the lower right.... have to get my favorite insects in when I can :)