Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. Also welcome to APRIL!!!! Spring is AWESOME. Enjoy some beautiful TULIPS from Biltmore!!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Wildflowers along the Blue Ridge Parkway --June, 2017

Catawba  Rhododendron Bloom,   Craggy Gardens 
On our Anniversary Trip to Switzerland Inn along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina  (June 21-23, 2017),   we encountered some gorgeous blooms which I want to share with you today... Hope you enjoy seeing some of these beautiful wildflowers/shrubs.

We were a week or two late to see the Catawba Rhododendrons in full bloom in Craggy Meadows --but luckily we did see a few still blooming... 

Another picture taken while we were in Craggy Meadows showing the Catawba Rhododendron blooms AND some Wild Hydrangea blooms

Wild Hydrangea Bush 

Wild Hydrangea Bloom (close-up)

Another bush showing the Wild Hydrangeas in bloom along the Blue Ridge Parkway

One of my favorite blooms,  the Flame (or Flaming) Azaleas (I love this color.)   

A close-up picture of the Flame Azaleas  

One more picture of the Flame Azaleas --found along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina 

The Mountain Laurel was really showing off!

I took a gazillion pictures of the Mountain Laurel in bloom all around us!

More Mountain Laurel... WOW!

A close-up of the Mountain Laurel  taken in a different elevation along the parkway from the 3 pictures above;    As you can tell,  this Laurel was just beginning to bloom..  The ones above were at the end stages of their blooms.  Mountain Laurel starts pink and gradually turns white.

 And another favorite was seeing lots and lots of  Rosebay Rhododendrons (also called White Rhododendrons);   They are at lower elevations than the Catawba Rhododendrons.   These start pink and turn white (similar to the Mountain Laurel).

Seeing these Rosebay Rhododendrons was such a joy for me...  We don't see the white ones very often.   They are so gorgeous...

Here's a close-up of one of the Rosebay Rhododendron blooms...    Some people ask what the difference is between Rhododendrons and Mountain Laurel.  I always look at the leaves since Rhododendron leaves are much larger than the Mountain Laurel.  But their blooms are similar even though the Laurel is smaller.
Hope you enjoyed seeing some of the pretty blooms along the Blue Ridge Parkway in late June...  I had to do a little research myself to make sure I got the names correct....  You can click on this link  (click HERE) to see a great listing of wildflowers along the parkway during all seasons.

I had seen the Catawba Rhododendrons at Craggy before --but not sure if I have ever seen so many Rosebay Rhododendrons in bloom before.     AND--I never knew the name of the  Wild Hydrangeas until now.... See what I learn when taking pictures, then doing research, and then blogging????  Amazing....

Have a great week.