If those are Joe Pye Weeds in full bloom, this must be August. Or Jewel Weed flowering, ironweed in early bloom, and the striped maple leaves–a few at least–beginning to show those colorful age spots that point just ahead at autumn.
I would have delighted to have been able to walk into this Blue Ridge Parkway meadow I have enjoyed this season in years past. But the “sequester” cut the feet out from under the normal park maintenance, so this meadow is over my head in wingstem. I peeked from the edge to get this shot of the “Joe Pye Party”, with 18 swallowtails just in this tight shot alone. [Click to enlarge]
I’m getting a backlog of images–several need more natural history stories to go with them. Some are just for fun–like this one.
I did note that so many swallowtails–and especially the darker female Tigers–are mighty beat up by this time of year. The yellow males seem to hold up a bit better. So close-ups of butterflies becomes less appealing in August than it was in July.
Soon, the goldenrod arthropods (blister beetles, wasps etc) will appear, and, even though I have shots of most from years past, I’ll have to do it again with the new Lumix as my love-hate relationship unfolds.