Tag Archives: Spring

Tulip Magnolia, Another Variety

Or perhaps “Saucer Magnolia” depending on where you look. Google quickly overwhelmed me with information in my search for how many varieties there might be. I’ll just say this particular tree has huge blossoms, 8 to 10 inches (20-25 cm) across, and they have a more delicate coloring than those in my post Tulip Magnolias in Bloom.

Tulip Magnolia Blossom
Tulip Magnolia Blossom

These blossoms didn’t seem to have the outer fuzzy covering as other tulip magnolias I have seen.

Tulip Magnolia Blossom
Tulip Magnolia Blossom

The blossoms emitted a sweet, but not overwhelming, fragrance. Some other varieties I have encountered could almost be said to stink.

Tulip Magnolia Blossom
Tulip Magnolia Blossom

Many Azaleas are also in bloom in this area and these made a nice backdrop to another unopened bloom.

Tulip Magnolia Blossom in Front of Azalea
Tulip Magnolia Blossom in Front of Azalea

Taken March 13, 2019.

Chickadee All In

A few days after seeing a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker investigate a tree cavity I saw a Chickadee do it.

Chickadee
Chickadee

It wasn’t as nice a day with a grey sky for a background, but the bird’s behavior was interesting.

Chickadee
Chickadee

The Chickadee went back and forth between this tree, which is dead, and an overhanging branch across the path. I’m not sure if he was looking for food or a potential nest site.

Chickadee
Chickadee

After the Chickadee flew off I went around the tree to see the cavity. I’ll be watching this spot when I pass by as spring progresses.

Tree Cavity
Tree Cavity

 

Tulip Magnolias in Bloom

It’s not yet spring, but Tulip Magnolias started blooming throughout the greater Charleston, SC area at the end of January.

Tulip Magnolia Blossom
Tulip Magnolia Blossom

We had a few days in the high 70s (around 25 C) last week and the blossoms popped out like crazy.

Tulip Magnolia Blossom
Tulip Magnolia Blossom

The daytime temperatures have since dropped back to more seasonable mid 60s (15C). I’d like to think we’re past having an overnight freeze, which would turn these beauties into black disappointment. However, two years ago we had a hard frost at the end of March so I won’t hold my breath.

Top of Tulip Magnolia Tree
Top of Tulip Magnolia Tree

Prickly Poppy

I spotted groups of these white flowers in several spots on a recent drive through Botany Bay Plantation Wildlife Management Area.

Prickly Poppy
Prickly Poppy

The spot I photographed these had a mowed path leading towards them so that I could get close, but the abundance of ant hills kept me from taking additional shots, including one of the full plant. I’ve avoided ant bites since moving to South Carolina, and I want to keep it that way.

Prickly Poppy
Prickly Poppy

The abundance of thorns on the stems and sharp leaves would prohibit picking a vaseful. My research to identify the flower also found that all parts of this plant are toxic in some way to humans, from the spines that contain skin irritating substances to the seeds which are poisonous.

Prickly Poppy
Prickly Poppy

Wood Duck With Chicks

Mama Wood Duck and her brood posed for a family portrait on one of the new alligator ramps installed around the rice field. I counted fourteen chicks while they were sitting still, but some were snoozing with their heads down so there may have been more. All About Birds says their clutch can have up to sixteen eggs.

Female Wood Duck with Chicks
Wood Duck with Chicks

A Common Gallinule was doing his best to photo bomb the portrait, paddling along behind them. I waited, hoping he would move along.

Female Wood Duck with Chicks
Wood Duck with Chicks

He did, but Mama felt it was time to move on, too, and they all bailed off in one fluid motion off the side of the ramp away from me.

Female Wood Duck with Chicks
Wood Duck with Chicks

Great Egret Back to the Nest

It’s always fun to watch the greetings as one Great Egret returns to the nest where its mate has been tending the eggs or chicks.

Great Egret Returns to Nest
Great Egret Returns to Nest

Meanwhile the neighbors pay no attention as they wait for their mates.

Great Egret Returns to Nest
Great Egret Returns to Nest

The Egret who was in the nest plopped back down, but I think there was one chick under there. You can just see some fuzz of chick(s) that have hatched in the nest on the lower left.

Great Egret Returns to Nest
Great Egret Returns to Nest