For a few weeks most summers Shenandoah National Park is a painter's palette of yellow, purple, white, red and orange wildflowers.
Turks Cap and an Empty Sky
Helianthus and Asters
Shenandoah's Wild side: meadows and roadsides of yellow helianthus, solidago and rudbeckia, purple asters and monarda, white leucanthemum, orange turks cap, red columbine, purple allium, pink milkweed and more.
Yellow Tiger Swallowtail on Turks Cap
Sunset on White Callico Asters
Wildflowers at the Forest's Edge
Shenandoah's wildflowers line long stretches of Skyline Drive and bank the edges of her nearby forests. Here, yellow helianthus and white callico asters, much of it nearly 5 feet tall, creates a stunning "in your face" late summer experience.
When conditions are right, Shenandoah can boast some of the best summer wildflower displays on the east coast.
With great wildflowers comes great butterflies! Here, a male yellow tiger swallowtail is attracted to the nectary of a common thistle. For those wondering,the female has a line of blue scales on the upper side of the hindwings!
A black female swallowtail perches atop a large milkweed bloom, one of its favorite sources of nectar.
Yellow Tiger Swallowtails feast on blooming thistle.
A clumb of Turks Cap blooms in late July along a trail in Shenandoah National Park.
Gentle Turks Cap
Turk's Cap - one of the special wildflowers located throughout Shenandoah NP. Often growing 4-5 feet, this neat flower sports bright red-orange, pendant, hibiscus-like flowers that seem to never fully open, creating the appearance - if you look closely - of a Turkish turban!
A black female swallowtail sips the sweet nectar of Turks Cap.
A Helianthus Bouquet