IMAGES OF SMALL THINGS FROM THE BIGGEST COUNTY IN TEXAS #728 – TAKE THE TIME TO TAKE A LOOK!

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“When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for the moment. I want to give that world to someone else.  Most people in the city rush around so, they have no time to look at a flower.  I want them to see
it whether they want to or not.”
–  Georgia O’Keeffe

I find it just a little ironic that Ms O’Keeffe painted flowers while living in the midst of a desert. Perhaps we can learn as much from what she saw as what she thought!

Take time to see † en theos monos ††† jim

Photo of Da day @ Da Pine #271

Lygodesmia texanaTexas skeletonplant, Texas skeleton weed, Skeleton-plant, Purple dandelionWe found this little beauty near the seep spring on our daily walk down the old Orient railroad line north out of Alpine. We were on a futile search for a couple of croaking frogs that we could hear but could not locate. I figure this bloom was prettier than any West Texas frog we might have found!Texas skeleton weed grows 12–15 inches tall, with smooth, almost leafless stems. Its few leaves are at the base of the plant and are narrow, gray-green, with short lobes. The bare stems, growing at odd angles, suggest its common name. The flower heads, rose to lavender and 2 inches across, grow individually at the end of flower stems. Only 1 flower head blooms at a time on each slender, forking stem. The bracts form a tube about 1 inch long, and the flower head extending from it opens out almost flat. It has 12 ray flowers and orchid-colored disc flowers that curl toward the center. Each ray has 5 minute teeth at the tip. When the stems are broken, they exude sap which coagulates into a gum.Always accept a bloom while you are looking for frogs on your journey††nada te turbe††††jim

via Photo of Da day @ Da Pine #271.

Photo of Da day @ Da Pine #271

Lygodesmia texana

Texas skeletonplant, Texas skeleton weed, Skeleton-plant, Purple dandelion

We found this little beauty near the seep spring on our daily walk down the old Orient railroad line north out of Alpine. We were on a futile search for a couple of croaking frogs that we could hear but could not locate. I figure this bloom was prettier than any West Texas frog we might have found!

Texas skeleton weed grows 12–15 inches tall, with smooth, almost leafless stems. Its few leaves are at the base of the plant and are narrow, gray-green, with short lobes. The bare stems, growing at odd angles, suggest its common name. The flower heads, rose to lavender and 2 inches across, grow individually at the end of flower stems. Only 1 flower head blooms at a time on each slender, forking stem. The bracts form a tube about 1 inch long, and the flower head extending from it opens out almost flat. It has 12 ray flowers and orchid-colored disc flowers that curl toward the center. Each ray has 5 minute teeth at the tip. When the stems are broken, they exude sap which coagulates into a gum.

Always accept a bloom while you are looking for frogs on your journey††nada te turbe††††jim

Photo of Da day @ Da Pine #133

We had seen this Great Blue Heron several times on our walk north of Alpine. He never allowed us to get too close. Most often he would take flight before we saw where he was perched. In checking the bird maps, Alpine is at the very northern extreme of his winter habitat. I am most assured that with the 20 degree temps and the snow & ice, he has headed on down Mexico way.

The Great Blue Heron is one impressive bird. This one’s wing span was about 40 inches. Lot of lift has to be generated by these wings.

I was looking through my photos of him from from a week ago and I found this file of him. He was pretty small on the image, but it was sharp and looked pretty nice after some cropping and noise reduction software. Sometimes you don’t know what you have, a familiar refrain of mine.

Be aware of what you find on your journey††nada te turbe†††jim