Sunday, August 21, 2016

Wildflowers on Parade in South Valley Park

I am back from a wonderful trip to Glacier National Park in Montana, and the Waterton Glacier International Peace Park in Alberta, Canada!  It was a long drive, to and from, and my husband put on over 3,000 miles on our car. We loved the sights we saw along the way on our drive through three states, and we especially loved our visits to the two absolutely beautiful scenic parks. In fact my camera has now over 1,000 photos on its memory discs waiting to be downloaded, and so a lot of editing is ahead for me before I'll be able to share, but I look forward to showing you all the beauty we saw in future posts.

In the meantime, I wanted to show you another beautiful place that I visited this summer. It is South Valley Park, a mile walk from my house.  I've blogged about the two trails that we walk often, that are located in the park in the past--Coyote Song Trail, and Swallow Trail.  Now I'd love to show you the beautiful wildflowers I saw on my walks in this park this summer.  All photos and photo collages will enlarge if clicked on.

The park has natural dirt trails that are surrounded by natural grasslands, trees, shrubs, wildlife, as well as beautiful red rock formations.

On one side are the foothills, and the other side...

...a Fountain Formation hogback.  

I feel so fortunate when spring and summer arrive and bring such a wonderful array of wildflowers to enjoy in this park.  I hope you will enjoy the collages I made of many of them...please click on to enlarge them.

"Stretching his hand up to reach the stars, too often man forgets the flowers at his feet." 
~ Jeremy Bentham.

"People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us." ~ Iris Murdoch

"May your life be like a wildflower, growing freely in the beauty and joy of each day." 
~ Native American Proverb

"I will be the gladdest thing under the sun! I will touch a hundred flowers and not pick one."
~ Edna St. Vincent Millay

"Where flowers bloom so does hope."
~ Lady Bird Johnson

Even the shrubs, grasses and trees have a wild beauty.

Bindweed -- Common Mullein -- Thistle

"A weed is but an unloved flower." 
~ Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Even though the wildflowers I saw all looked beautiful to my untrained eye, I found out that some of them are considered noxious weed species by the Colorado Department of Agriculture.  They are non native and aggressive, replacing native species. You can see the list of noxious weeds on this link. Noxious weeds are spread by animals, humans, water and wind, They can be introduced as seeds in soil, ornamental planting mixes, nursery stock or hitch hike on vehicles.  Colorado, like most states is taking aggressive action to decrease the impact noxious weeds make on the landscapes of open space.

South Valley is a peaceful place to walk to enjoy the sights and sounds of nature...

...even the noisy chatter of crows!

Time to go as a thunderstorm quickly approaches over the foothills. I just about made it home in time before the rain came. I will be back in my next post to show more of what I have been doing in Colorado this summer.  I hope you have also been enjoying these wonderful summer days!

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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Last Days of Summer..

"And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you
because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places.
Those who don't believe in magic will never find it,"
~ Roald Dahl

Do you see it?  I took many photos of wildflowers this summer in an open space park near my home, and as I was editing them I almost cropped this photo to concentrate on the flower. At the last moment I saw the beetle hanging onto the blade of straw in the upper left corner.  If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you will see the beetle was looking at me!

"Blessed are they who see beautiful things in
 humble places where other people see nothing."
~ Camille Pissarro

I also captured this ant clinging to a flower stem with my camera lens.....

"To walk in nature is to witness a thousand miracles."
~Mary Davis

...and three beetles on this daisy.

"Bees do have a smell, you know, and if they don't they should, 
for their feet are dusted with spices from a million flowers."
~ Ray Bradbury

My husband and I have been "busy as bees" this summer. We drove up a 14,000 foot high mountain, visited a historic ranch, two historic houses, and a fort that was on the Santa Fe Trail when immigrants crossed this country in covered wagons and Native Americans lived on the plains.  We attended a lavender festival and saw two operas in a 1872 opera house in an old Gold Rush town. We enjoyed barbecues with our family and had fun with our grandchildren. Now we are looking forward to an upcoming visit of a niece and great nephew from New York.

If you truly love nature you will find beauty everywhere."
~ Vincent Van Gogh

As the month of August winds down I'm taking a little break from my blog to enjoy the end of summer.  A little more time to enjoy the flowers, hummingbirds and young fawns that I see in my backyard, and a few more family barbecues and last trips to the community pool.  I will be back soon!  

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