13 October 2010

Cottonwood reflections

Cottonwoods turning, Vermillion

The one tree that defines the prairies is the cottonwood. It lines all available water sources, so that rivers from the air look like knotted green threads. It stabilizes the fragile prairie soils, survives fires, and provides wildlife habitat in life and in death. Blazing yellow cottonwoods lined our way home on the back roads from Vermillion to the Black Hills. Take a moment to enjoy the reflections and traces of fall.

Sumac, one of the few red touches out here

Cottonwood arch with a red-tailed hawk at a distance


...a thousand shades of gold and brown...

...glass-still water....

...beginning cottonwoods on the bank....

...and splendid old ones on the hill.

Milkweed pod, burst.

Perfect proportions.

Glowing colors...

...and distant waters.

Thirteen-lined ground squirrel foraging

Rabbit cloud

Small toad seeking warmth

Cottonwood with rainbows at sunrise.

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