Yesterday at lunch I took a walk through Concord. I hadn’t done that in a while, so there were a lot of blooms to photograph.
I was surpised to find some Butter and Eggs (Linaria vulgaris), as it grows in a lot of places I can see from the car while I’m driving, and I hadn’t noticed any in bloom that way. I guess that shows why walking is better when you’re trying to see stuff. Incidentally, this clump was the only one I saw that was in bloom. I expect to see a lot more if it starting next week.
I was even more surprised to see this mulberry, as it’s right along the sidewalk and I must have passed it a thousand times before. Either I never noticed it, or I forgot it was here.
There was lots of Rabbitfoot clover in bloom too. I don’t know of any clovers that are native to North America. As far as I know, they were all (including this one) imported as pasture crops.
I didn’t list a common name in the caption of Solanum dulcamara, because it has way too many of them, and I have no idea which ones would be the most common. The intro from the Wikipedia article illustrate this point nicely:
Solanum dulcamara, also known as bittersweet, bittersweet nightshade, bitter nightshade, blue bindweed, Amara Dulcis, climbing nightshade, fellenwort, felonwood, poisonberry, poisonflower, scarlet berry, snakeberry, trailing bittersweet, trailing nightshade, violet bloom, or woody nightshade, is a species of vine in the potato genus Solanum, family Solanaceae. It is native to Europe and Asia, and widely naturalised elsewhere, including North America, where it is an invasive problem weed.
It’s a poisonous plant closely related to tomatoes and potatoes. When the berries ripen, they even look like tiny tomatoes, but of course, it would be a very bad idea to eat them.
There is plenty of yarrow in bloom now. That’s another one that easy to spot from the highway. I checked beneath the umbels of all the specimens growing near this one looking for crab spiders (Misumena vatia), but I didn’t find any.
There’s a lot of hawthorn growing along the railroad tracks. I don’t know which species of hawthorn this is, and I don’ think it would be all that easy to narrow it down either, as the genus has hundreds of member species.
This plant has a stunning blossom, and I was not able to do it justice yesterday. It was a bit breezy, so the blooms just wouldn’t sit still for a nice portrait. There was only one of these bushes here along the tracks three years ago when I started logging blooms. Now there are at least a dozen. I read that it was an invasive alien, and after seeing this explosion in its population, I have good reason to believe it now.
This is another non-native pasture crop imported from abroad. The blooms always remind me of the head of a triceratops. The name comes from the shape of the seed pod. I must say it’s fitting too.
When I got back to the office there was an ambulance parked behind our office building next to Hermanos (a Mexican restaurant). I didn’t think too much of it then. When I went into our building though, I immediately noticed an incredible smoky stench! And found a couple of these parked outside my office window:
Just downstairs from my office is another restaurant/bakery. It’s not the first time they’ve ever burned anything, but it was by far more smoke than usual. Apparently, it was enough to fill our offices upstairs and set off our smoke detectors (though not theirs?) As it turns out, our fire alarm system does not automatically summon the fire department, so one of my coworkers ended up calling them herself. This comes as a pretty big surprise to me, especially since the FD pretty much forced our church to spend $8K upgrading our alarm system so that they would be automatically called. So they make 501(c)’s spend big bucks on that, but not commercial entities, like… bakeries? Shrug!
The firemen tossed the burning bread out into the street:
This pile of bread ended up closing the restaurant for a few days. The newspaper has an article.
When I got home, I was pleased to find that the Whorled loosestrife (Lysimachia quadrifolia) was in bloom:
I love these things. They look exactly like weeds until they bloom. 🙂 This one is somewhat unusual though, in that it has six petals instead of the more typical five. Most plants with three or six petals are monocots with parallel veins in the leaves (think lilies and irises). Dicots have branching veins in the leaves (roses, asters, etc). So this particular blossom, a dicot looks like a monocot. Maybe it’s a teenager trying to fit in with its monocot buddies and making its dicot family angry. Nature’s own West Side Story?