SpringScapes (3)

To continue this new category, allowing for a brief arachnid aside yesterday, here are two more views from my adventure up into the coolth of the high country above Cardrona last week, this time looking the other way and upward rather than down and across the valley. Thanks to some prompt input from Liz, a local, we believe that these striking plants are a species of speargrass (Genus Aciphylla), also known as Wild Spaniard. I’d like to know what experience was lurking behind that common name (or maybe it’s better not to know).

About krikitarts

Welcome to Krikit Arts! I'm a veterinarian; photographer; finger-style guitarist, composer, instructor, and singer/songwriter; fisherman; and fly-tyer. Please enjoy--and please respect my full rights to all photos on this Website!
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12 Responses to SpringScapes (3)

  1. Ms. Liz says:

    I’d say they’re a species of Aciphylla aka speargrass or wild spaniard. You can see they’ve had long flower-heads back in the season.

  2. The contrast between the speargrass on the ground frost is quite something in your images. The grass looks to be quite hardy.

    • krikitarts says:

      At this elevation, in this landscape, I’d wager you’re right on the money. I was fortunate to have a few wispy clouds to provide something of a softbox effect between periods of stark sunshine.

  3. Peter Klopp says:

    The wild Spaniards look more like hedgehogs to me. I have never seen these curious plants before.

  4. krikitarts says:

    Haha, yes, hedgehogs–or sea urchins.

  5. shoreacres says:

    Their appearance reminds me of some of our yucca species –especially Spanish Dagger. I keep getting confused by the difference in our seasons. Since your spring is coming, have the fresher looking plants bloomed recently, or are the stalks left over from last year?

    • krikitarts says:

      The stalks were quite dry and woody, and a bit prickly. As my Otago buddy Liz chimed in above, “they’ve had long flower-heads back in the [last growing] season.” I can certainly see why you saw a resemblance with the yuccas, though I don’t see anything that looks like the flowering stalks. Here is an example of what they look like in bloom.

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