Wildflower Wednesday: Maybe an orchid?

Colored pencil sketch of a red-stalked, leafless wildflower with round seed capsules, found at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

Could this be a coral root orchid? Enquiring minds want to know!

This unusual looking plant was growing by the side of the Bridle Trail in the North Rim of the Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona. It’s just under a foot tall, and is leafless with a dark red, subtly striped stalk.

Arizona wildflower, leafless, with a red stalk and round seed capsules.

I can hardly wait to find out what it is!

I immediately thought it might be a coral root orchid. Unfortunately, the seed capsules are roundish, and the two coral roots in Arizona have ovalish seed capsules. I sent in a photo to one of the rangers, who had said she would pass the information on to one of the botany specialists on staff.

If you have an inkling as to which species this might be, please drop me a line in the comment box! :-)

Wouldn’t it be so exciting if it were an orchid?

Welcome Wildflower Wednesday link-partiers! The Wildflower Wednesday link party is the brainchild of Gail Eichelberger of Clay and Limestone blog. Go take a look at some of the exciting late-summer wildflower images people are sharing from their gardens and hikes. Enjoy!

Making time for an artistic play-date

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I’ve signed up for Kelly Rae Roberts’ “Hello Soul, Hello Mantra” online painting course. It should be a great opportunity to play with materials that have been lurking in my drawers, as well as cut loose with a freer, more gestural style. Another reason I signed up was to get a chance to incorporate text with images and experiment with abstraction.
Saturday I spent an hour or so with my vintage Indian wood textile-printing blocks and some liquid craft acrylic paints. If you print on dampened paper placed on a sheet of craft foam for cushioning, you can get a pretty good impression. Above you can see some imprints made with pearlescent peach paint layered over some watercolor washes.
Class starts September 8. Maybe you’d like to join me?

Travels with Sketchbook: The Grand Canyon

Watercolor and pigment marker on watercolor paper. Image of the Grand Canyon's North Rim at sunrise.

Sunrise is a special time at the Grand Canyon! After loosely placing the washes on site, I added detail with pigment markers later that day.

My portfolio page, Travels with Sketchbook, has been updated with a new gallery of images made during our recent trip to the Grand Canyon.

For this series of landscape sketches, I returned to the slightly “naive” style I’ve used in earlier travel sketches—loose watercolor sketches defined with pen and ink lines and marks.

There are 2 botanical sketches in the gallery: One is rendered in color pencil, the other is color washes with pen. Both were made at the side of some of the main trails in the park! It just goes to show you that you can find interesting things right under your nose, if you’ll only take the time to look carefully. :-)

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