Friday, April 22, 2011

Pickerelweed

When I first moved to Florida in 1988, this was one of the first aquatic flowers that I photographed. When I saw this one in John Chestnut Park in Palm Harbor, it reminded me of the time many years ago when I first saw these pretty flowers.

I was standing by the edge of a pond photographing it, when movement at my feet caught my eye. Just as I took the camera away from my face, I saw an Alligator come up slowly right between my legs. It scared the daylights out of me. It was the first Alligator I'd ever seen in the wild. I didn't know it then, but it was a pretty young one, because it was so small. I doubt it was more than a year old.

When I look back on it that incident now, it gives me a chuckle. When I saw him, I wasn't sure what to do so I slowly walked backward and got out of that park as soon as I could. I think I'd still do the same thing today.

Since the subject of this blog is Pickerelweed, I should probably get back to that instead of reminiscing about the past. Pickerelweed (Pontederia cordata) is an aquatic plant that grows in shallow, still water. It gets its name from the Pickerel fish that shares the same habitat. Pickerelweed blooms from June through November in freshwater marshes, lakes, streams and at the edge of ponds.

I like to finish my blog with a little nature lesson for those who would like to learn as much as I've learned about nature ever since I started taking photos of nature. It has taught me so much.
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