In the Heat of the Day!?

The summer season and waves of brightly colored wildflowers that arrive with it can be a seemingly endless array of sights, sounds and ecological interactions. There’s usually something in the mix to baffle, entertain and satisfy any nature enthusiast, regardless of their specialty. A simple, short walk through an open natural area (meadows, fallow fields, waste places) in the middle of a hot, steamy day can prove to be quite rewarding!

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St. Johnswort

My gallery is a sample of images captured in the month of July. Let’s take a hike!

Photos by NB Hunter. © All Rights Reserved.

Shrubs in Bloom

In late June and early July, the flowers of native and exotic shrubs dominate open areas, including forest edges, roadsides and abandoned fields that are in the early stages of woody plant colonization.

Two species in bloom now are Red-panicle or Gray-stemmed Dogwood (Cornus racemosa; peak bloom) and Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora; past peak bloom).

Gray-stemmed Dogwood is a native, thicket-forming shrub with attractive white flower clusters in early summer and white fruit on branched, red stalks in autumn. A large variety of insects are working the flowers now, and birds will devour the fruit when ripe.

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Red-panicle or Gray-stemmed Dogwood in bloom

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Red-panicle or Gray-stemmed Dogwood in bloom

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Ctenuchid Moth on Gray-stemmed Dogwood blossoms

Multiflora Rose is an exotic species of shrub that also has the ability to grow as a vine if adjacent woody plants provide support. Once planted for erosion control, living fences and wildlife habitat, it is now considered to be invasive. Attractive, fragrant flowers develop into clusters of small, red fruits that persists well into the winter.

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Photos by NB Hunter. © All Rights Reserved.