While chasing a decidedly camera-shy Common Buckeye butterfly yesterday afternoon, I came upon a fleeting segment of natural wonder.
Beneath a patch of zinnias an asclepias seedpod was having a moment. Walls of the okra-shaped pod had separated, revealing rows of seeds attached to white, silky threads.
Patterns in nature are fascinating and here the seeds are aligned, held back by gentle tufts of silkiness.
I went inside to grab some clippers imagining this would make a great focal point for a floral design.
In my brief two-minute absence nature carried on with its script, sending the necessary amount of wind across the flower bed, releasing the seeds into the world. Wind dispersal sends seeds away from the parent plant, in this case carried atop silky parachutes. Stunned it had happened so immediately I failed to even photograph the mostly bare stems left behind.
Eventually I managed a distant shot of the butterfly, a satisfying consolation and another fine example of nature’s fondness for pattern.