The Oh Wow! Lily

Canada Lilies photographed by Jeff Zablow at Akeleyi Swamp, NY

The old railroad grade has been wisely converted to a good use, a nearly straight mile-long trail through a very, very large swamp. Akeley Swamp in western New York State. Barbara Ann and I were there in June 2018.

She was looking for native orchids and wildflowers. I was looking for  . . . butterflies. Hundreds of Common milkweed plants were in peak of bloom. I have never seen such a sight, millions of individual milkweed flowers, set on the globular milkweed flowerheads. Those milkweeds were at the beginning of the trail, and I must have had a Big smile on my face = This will be good, very good. Hundreds of butterflies must await us.

Nuh uh. We saw very few butterflies those next 4 hours. But, but, we had no time for disappointment, for 5 minutes on the trail, on a gorgeous morning, with hundreds of acres of swamp to our right, and compelling treed swamp to our left . . . we saw these! Canada Lillies (Lilium canadense).

Stopped both of us, in our tracks. You stop, you make sure you are seeing what you are seeing ( a ‘Pesci’ moment! ) and you whisper, “Oh Wow!” I mean, can these be real, or has someone stuck handmade plastic masterpieces along the left side of the trail here and there?

Well, they are real and they are magnificent. Lacking a special clamp to hold these blooms with their inner face looking to us, I am not able to share their attractive spotted inner petals. You must take my word that they sweetly sing to your eyes. G-d’s superb work, Junaisha.

Jeff

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