Wildflower consolation.

This is what our local news station posted on its Facebook page last night:

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Seriously…frost warning?  I really don’t think I can handle this…and I know my garden DEFINITELY isn’t ready!

While we weren’t quite in the frost zone here in Calgary, we’re currently sitting at a (balmy!) 5 degrees Celsius (41 degrees Fahrenheit) this morning and I know I’m going to need to wear my jacket to work.  And maybe my mittens, LOL!  I’m a tad worried about my zucchini plants, as our community garden has some nasty frost pockets.  Last year, in early September, a not-quite-frost came through and blasted all of the squash plants to blackened mush.  I’m right in the middle of Zucchinipalooza and it would be sad to see it end so soon.  (Speaking of which, does anyone have any favourite zucchini recipes to share?  I’m having such fun trying out new ones!).  🙂

Despite (because of?) the vagaries of our weather, the wildflowers are still blooming merrily away.  I recently took a walk up to my favourite neighbourhood haunts, Nose Hill and Whispering Woods, to enjoy the sights:

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Wild Bergamot – Monarda fistulosa

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Prairie Coneflower – Ratibida columnifera 

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Fireweed – Chamerion angustifolium  Sigh…this just reminds me that I didn’t get around to making fireweed jelly again this year.  It WILL happen in 2014! 

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Northern Crane’s-Bill – Geranium bicknellii

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Smooth Blue Aster – Symphyotrichum laeve

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What wildflowers are blooming in your part of the world?  Which ones are your favourites?

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28 thoughts on “Wildflower consolation.

  1. oh, such beautiful photo’s from beautiful flowers and so different from what I am used too. I still have not had the time to look up the wildflowers new to me here in Southern Ohio. Ox-eye daisies and asters are definitely my favorites.
    Zucchini recipe: Mix olive oil with black pepper, salt , green herbs as you have it and fresh chopped garlic. Brush over slices of zucchinis and grill on the BBQ for 2 to 3 minutes. Cover pizzas/bread with this, add arugula and a sharp cheese and munch away!

    • I love the asters, too! Oxeye daisies are very common here, too, but they’re now on the invasive plants list and are being eradicated. (I’m not sure all of them will be eliminated any time soon, though – they spread like crazy!).

      I love your zucchini recipe – that sounds like the perfect way to top a pizza or a baguette! I even have some fresh arugula to go with it…. I am so happy that you shared this! 🙂

  2. I was reading in bed last night when my husband come up and said there was frost warning. I had the same reaction as you. Seriously?? So Soon?? As I was already nestled in bed in my PJ’s I chose to risk it and not go out and cover my annuals. This morning everything looked fine but now I have to be on frost alert. Your photographs of the wildflowers look beautiful. I have to admit I really like the Fireweed but I never know what it is called. Now I know. Have a great sunny day! ~Thea

    • Thanks so much, Thea! It’s definitely too soon to be thinking about frost…I’m so glad your flowers were okay because you were right in the zone, weren’t you? The farm that our CSA shares come from is located outside of Bowden and they were hit with frost; some of the tender plants were harmed.

      Have a wonderful weekend!

  3. Lovely pictures. I especially like the one of the Prairie Coneflowers.

    When we have a lot of zucchini I shred it and make zucchini bread and add in spices, raisins, cranberries, etc.. I just use a quick bread recipe and modify it.

    If you are looking for another great wildflower spot close to Calgary check out Middle Lake (just off HWY 1x I think). We were there a week ago and it was amazing.

  4. There are lots of them which used to bloom on our meadows in Germany where I grew up. We used to pick them and make bunches to take home to my mum. It is lovely to see them all, here in London in the city you do not see any meadows.

    • That’s such a sweet memory! 🙂

      We are so lucky to have some natural areas nearby – I am happy that I can walk there and enjoy the wildflowers. I love the parks, too, with the cultivated flowers – it’s nice to see how they beautify urban areas!

    • Thanks so much, Christina – yes, my zucchini survived! (Whew!). That pasta recipe looks divine; I will definitely try it. I like the fact that it is easy to prepare and doesn’t have a lot of ingredients – perfect for a quick supper during the week after I’ve been working all day. Thank you for sharing it! 🙂

  5. 5°C is chilly! We had 9°C one night recently, but the days have warmed up nicely to the 20s. You have some lovely wild flowers in your neighbourhood – the coneflower is so pretty – we don’t get those here. My favourites at the moment are the blue Chicory flowers which line the roads and footpaths everywhere from July onwards. And the Queen Ann’s Lace is also very pretty – a definite favourite of mine too!

    • That blue chicory is exquisite…I’ve never seen it here, but apparently it’s hardy to our zone, so I wonder why it’s not more common. Queen’s Anne lace is gorgeous; I haven’t seen any in bloom yet this year, but I’m hoping to get out for a few more walks in the next couple of weeks, so perhaps I’ll be lucky.

  6. heading back up the mercury this week but there is that hoary whiff to the morning air which points to Autumn. We have fireweed or as we call it Rose Bay willowherb – love the wild Bergamot image

  7. Zucchinipalooza ! LOL. I like to roll quartered zucchini (2″ long) in a little Dream Whip, then into spiced breadcrumb (I add salt, garlic and basil). then bake on greased cookie sheet for 15 min at 350. Yummy with sour cream and dill dip.

  8. Joe Pye Weed, Sunflowers, Cup Plant and other Silphiums, Rudbeckias, Echinaceas … Some of these are starting to fade. The asters are just beginning to bloom, but the goldenrods haven’t stirred yet. Hope you avoid the frost! I’ve seen fireweed, but I’ve never heard of fireweed jelly.

    • I love those late summer blooms! I definitely have to work on bolstering the colour in my garden for this time of year…I definitely MUST HAVE some asters. I’m a big fan of Joe Pye weed and echinaceas as well (not those frou-frou ones, though).

    • I do hope the weather holds – it seems like just yesterday we were longing to get the seeds in the ground and waiting for things to warm up! 🙂 We’ll enjoy every last second of this growing season, that’s for sure!

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