A perfect, sunny, calm evening last week demanded that we take a miles-long hike across an area of green, rolling prairie- land. The area is a perfect representation of the mostly tall-grass prairie that at one time encompassed the whole area near here. The area is dotted with wetlands and lakes and in some places undulates in a perfect treeless fashion to the horizon. I can imagine it to look much as it looked when the first settlers arrived in the area.
We were on a photo- mission as the early summer native flowers have begun their blooming time. We surprised whole groups of foxglove beard tongue in full and glorious bloom, their lavender- pink trumpets telling the world it is now summer. The spiked and frayed remnants of the pasque flowers’ blossoms still begged our photo attention as did the ethereal post- blooms of the prairie smoke.
There were golden Alexander’s in bright array, and many other native plants alive and growing green awaiting, their special colorful time to come. The warm season grasses such as bluestem and gramma are now also rising to their blooming stage, gaining stature each day. We surprised them all and photographed them as they hid out in the rolling hills. The Prairie Paparazzi struck with reckless abandon as we clicked our way across the vast remnant of grassland. An added sidelight to the expedition was that one of those clear, hidden, gemlike lakes happens to have a population of hungry walleyes living in its depths. More photo ops!