I have been busy lately. I started a new job earlier this month, and it is sure eating into my leisure time. I decided today that it was time to make time to take a few photos. I stopped at a “secret” park near my church. I call it secret because there is no sign on the road alerting the public to its presence. I had driven by it maybe a thousand times before I knew it was there, and only spotted it from satellite photos while playing around on Google Maps a few years ago.

But the park is there, and it has wildflowers. I stopped for maybe ten minutes. First up was some tower mustard. I have this growing along the south side of my house.

Tower mustard (Arabis glabra)

Tower mustard (Arabis glabra)

The yarrow is blooming now too:

Common yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

Common yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

And the king devil is out. Some people call this yellow hawkweed, but “king devil” definitely has a more adventurous ring to it.

King devil (Hieracium pratense)

King devil (Hieracium pratense)

The birdsfoot trefoil has been in bloom for a while, but I think this is my first shot of it this year.

Birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus)

Birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus)

Then I found this unfortunate fellow.

Deer?

Deer?

This is only about half its spine. All together, I estimate that the spine was at least three feet long, and maybe more. There aren’t a lot of animals around here that are that big – deer, bear, coyote, and sometimes beaver. I think this is a deer, but I’m really only guessing. It looks like it has been picked pretty clean.

Not far from the skeleton I saw a black locust in bloom. Most people don’t know it, but these flowers are edible, and indeed, they are very sweet and quite palatable. I ate this bunch after I took its picture for you.

Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia)

Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia)

On the way back up the hill towards the car I found some white campion.

White campion (Silene latifolia)

White campion (Silene latifolia)

And then I saw this clump of yellow sorrel.

Common yellow sorrel (Oxalis stricta)

Common yellow sorrel (Oxalis stricta)


These are also good to eat. As most kids can tell you, they are very sour (in a good way). That sourness comes from oxalic acid (hence the genus name). Too much of it is said to be bad for you, but kids everywhere seem to pay that no heed whatsoever.

Then it was back to the car, and off to work.

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