I decided the agave page needed a little something extra, so here’s the little hummingbird I’m working on for it:
I was trying to decide between a bat and a hummingbird, but who am I kidding? Hummingbirds are way cuter (no offense, bats). Bats are one of the major pollinators of agave flowers, so they had a strong case, but everyone loses to tiny little birds.
Bluebonnets are next!
Here are the finished drawings. I wasn’t satisfied with the first, and I hated it more every time I saw it, so I worked on it some more while I was outside with my kids. I think I am satisfied with the result. (So far, I don’t hate it every time I walk by it!!)
The first one:
Me outside-it’s spring, right?
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I’ve finally gotten around to starting to finish the first page of “B is for Bluebonnet”-doesn’t sound like a lot, but it is to me. In fact, this is the second go ’round, and I have twin boys, okay? Hopefully the rest of the pages will come rolling in sooner, rather than later, but who knows when the next wave of colds will hit us…
The Texas bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) is an annual flowering plant endemic to Texas. (i.e. only found in Texas) It comes as no shock, then, that it is also Texas’ state flower!
Fun facts about the Texas Bluebonnet:
- Bluebonnets are a part of the legume (bean) family, and they have a symbiotic relationship between Rhizobia bacteria around their roots. This allows them to grow in terrible soil conditions. Have you ever seen the fields and fields of bluebonnets along the median of Texas state highways?
Freshly dug peanuts Wikimedia Commons
- The seed coats of bluebonnets are hard and tough, and wind, rain, and weather has to work over months–even years–to penetrate the coat and cause germination.
- Bluebonnet seeds actually germinate and sprout in the fall (so you should plant them then). They stay small and inconspicuous during the winter, while they grow a massive root system. Come spring, they grow like crazy and send up a plume of flowers.
- Bluebonnets rely heavily on bees to pollinate their flowers. White on the flowers attracts the bees while pollen is ready (bees can see white very well), and red on the flowers indicates the window for pollination has passed. (Bees can’t see red)
- Texas actually has five state flowers: all of them different bluebonnet (Lupinus) species!
Big Bend bluebonnet Wikimedia Commons
Stay tuned for facts about chrysanthemums next!