Friday, January 23, 2015

Signs of Spring at Henry W. Coe Park

These photos are from a wildflower hike on the Forest, Springs, & Corral trails at Coe Park on January 22, 2015.  All photos taken with my Cannon PowerShot.  Most shots are larger than life-size.  Enjoy!

Milkmaids are one of the first flowers of Spring.  Forest Trail.

Sometimes milkmaids have pink tones; some are pure white.  Wildflower enthusiasts love to see milkmaids because their blooms mean the beginning of the flowering season.
Milkmaids flower in different forms.  All have four petals but the petal shapes are different. Forest Trail.

Woodland shooting star in bud.  Another early sign of  Spring.  Forest Trail.

Woodland shooting star; the first flowering on the Forest Trail.  

Ferns are coming out now too.  These may be wood ferns of some type.

Woodfern (?) on the Forest Trail.
Hillside gooseberry was in bloom; do you see any of the spines that characterize this shrub?
Hillside gooseberry on the Forest Trail.  Two stages of bloom.

Insects have laid their eggs in some of the gooseberry leaves and the bush has created galls around them.  Very small insects.

Galls on gooseberry leaves. 

Trees bloom too!  These photos show California bay laurel in bloom on Manzanita Point Road and in bud on the Forest Trail.

California bay laurel.
California Bay Laurel in bloom.

There were two other wildflowers in bloom on the Forest Trail: chickweed and wild cucumber (too bad the cucumber photo didn't turn out well).

Common chickweed is not a native plant; some folks might call it a weed.  Petals are about 1/8 inch in length; leaves about 1/2 inch in length.  
Along the Springs Trail, there were a few Hound's tongue in bud and bloom.  Look for blue flowers and leaves that resemble a dog's tongue.

Hound's tongue in bud on Springs Trail.  

Hound's tongue on the Springs Trail.
Lastly, on the Corral Trail, this single buttercup showed its color.

Buttercup flowers have a lot of shiny petals; makes them easy to ID.  
That's all for now; as we enter wildflower season, there will be more flowers on the Coe trails each week.  Check out What's In Bloom Now for current bloomers and the Henry W. Coe Wildflower Guide for more information and photos.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Japantown San Jose: Changes in Winter

Early evening in Japantown San Jose.  Photo shoot inspired by the publication of 

Originally a Chinese restaurant, then a Cuban eatery.

Winter cold

Sycamore balls snagged on barbed wire.

Plywood on brick

Winter leaves at the Corporation Yard