Tag Archives: wild

“Wild Columbine” – Marble Lake, Bancroft

“Wild Columbines” - Marble Lake, Bancroft

“The columbine and iris bowed down to make way for bolder sprays of red valerian, and a mingled profusion of clustered Canterbury bells and sweet william, pale blues and pinks intertwined, danced at the feet of more stately spears of deep-purple foxglove and monkshood.” 
― Susanna Kearsley

On the trend of pinks and pastels, yet another beautiful native spring flower, the Wild Columbine (aquilegia canadensis), is found on rocky outcrops in the Bancroft, Ontario area among emerging ferns, jack-in-the-pulpit, and a few late trilliums. I really enjoy finding these little jewels on my walks in the woods. A little splash of coral catches my eye, then another. They seem to favour cracks in the rock over flat soil. They are such delicate plants and seem almost fragile compared to their thick stemmed and fibrous companions.

The only shortcoming of getting out to enjoy these lovely wildflowers is the ever present company of black flies, the bane of Canadian forests in spring time. However, based on the very warm weekend we just had here, they should be gone in short measure and their associates, the mosquitoes, will take their place in the stinging insect category.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/60 sec, f/2.8, ISO 500

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“Forest Floor Leeks” – Stouffville Reservoir

“Forest Floor Leeks” - Stouffville Reservoir

I love watching the early plants emerge from the dead-looking ground in the spring. They follow the same pattern, year after year, whether it’s an early or late spring, the pattern remains consistent, though sometime s compressed or accelerated. This past winter was particularly cold and spring has been delayed by many cold spells. So, I walk through the woods in hopes of seeing those early emergences. I was very pleased to see the abundance of wild leeks, or “ramps” as they are also known, depending on the region you live in. Though the forest floor is still grey/brown and lifeless looking, these beautiful bright green leaves with the red bases light the forest floor up, while other plants remain dormant. But, the pattern must be followed and nature’s rhythms obeyed. I know, that within the next few weeks the forest will be alive once more with trout lilies, red  and white trilliums, and all the other print flowering plants I have come to enjoy so much.

I will have to go back in a few weeks and harvest some of these delicious wild leeks for a spring time soup. Can’t wait for the morels and fiddle heads to follow.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 85 mm
1/125 sec @ f/5.6, ISO 250