Category Archives: wildflowers

Springtime wakes up sleepy wildlife

We haven’t seen some of these critters in a while.  Either they hibernate or they migrate south for the winter.

Nutria on riverbank
Nutria on riverbank

It seems like the nutria would stick around but we haven’t noticed them.  Maybe they just eat something other than grass in the winter?

Nutria swimming
Nutria swimming

It’s hard to tell the difference between a nutria and a beaver when they are swimming.  Watch for the tail.

nutria have orange front teeth
Nutria have orange front teeth

I had NO idea that nutria had orange incisors!  That is one of the features that distinguishes them from the muskrat.  Nutria are also larger and have fur on their tail.  You can see the orange as he scratches his chin.

Canada Goose Couple
Canada Goose Couple

I should look at last year’s photos to see when the Canada Geese started showing up but it sure seems early.  Everything seems early in the northwest due to the incredibly mild winter.


I love the Trillium wildflower!  We saw our first one this spring today.  Did you know it takes 5 years for a Trillium to develop from seed to flower?  There’s a great reason not to pick the wildflowers!

Elk screaming
AAAAAGGGHHH (insert goat scream here)

Oops!  I think I startled the pee out of her!  🙂

Lillies and Ferns on the Oregon Coast

Did you know that the baby fiddleheads are a delicacy?  Sauteed in butter they taste similar to asparagus.  (I can neither confirm nor deny this.)

fiddlehead fern
Fiddleheads on certain types of ferns

The Western Maidenhair fern has a couple unique features that make it one of the most delicate of the fern family.  (I’m not really an expert, it just sounded good.)

Western Maidenhair Fern
Western Maidenhair Fern

The fine, black, stem contrasts with the green leaves.  It looks like the fronds shoot off one side of the main stem which makes it curl.  The maidenhair ferns grow in the splash-zone of waterfalls and creeks.  I found these when I hiked up the creek to check on our spring head after the neighbor reported she’d ran out of water.

oregon ferns
Multiple types of ferns

Here are some different types mixed together.  I think the fiddleheads only grow from the ferns that grow in a clump that are green year-round.

Calla Lily
Calla Lillies

I don’t think Calla Lillies are natural here in Oregon.  But, where they’ve been planted, they multiply like crazy.  They like shade.  I took these cuttings and noticed something funny on the stalk of the bloom that hadn’t opened all the way yet.

calla lily stems
Curly stems

Only the stalk of the newer blossom curled.