Sunday, 12 July 2015

Austria June 2015 Mayrhofen Flowers - Part 1

One of my pleasures on holiday is flower hunting and I particularly like Alpine Meadows where there is a nice lift to get you up to the 2,000 metre level. This year I had chosen to stay in Mayrhofen at the south end of the Zillertal near Innsbruck. The first of the 2 weeks was quite wet and I found many of the pictures were spoilt by having water on the lens. My other problem was self-inflicted, a new camera, and I didn't really come to terms with how to take consistent and sharp close up pictures.
The area was good for wild flowers and the gardens and window boxes were good as well. When I get back from holiday I try to identify the flowers from the pictures and this doesn't work so well, so some of the names may well be wrong. The names I have used are those in "The Alpine Flowers of Britain and Europe" by Christopher Grey-Wilson which was illustratted by Marjorie Blamey.
So what did I see?

Trumpet Gentian - Gentiana acaulis

This Gentian feels like the constant which says you are in the Alps and was widespread round Mayrhofen. Nearly always found with
Spring Gentian - Gentiana verna

I really don't know when to stop taking pictures of these either, I know they flower in Teesdale, but there are vast numbers out in Austria.
The commonest of the Viola family was
Yellow Wood Violet - Viola biflora
 This flower is probably smaller than our common violets and, despite it's name, is widespread in meadows as well as occurring in woods.
Purple Saxifrage - Saxifraga oppositifolia

 Mountain Avens - Dryas octopetalla

There are 2 plants which appear in the brown debris left when the snow has just melted
 Alpine Snowbell - Soldanella alpina
This was widespread wherever there were newly melted (or melting) patches of snow and
Purple Crocus - Crocus vernus
I only found one of these, possibly I didn't go high enough, but you can clearly see the dead vegetation which has been under the snow. Within days this will be covered by green shoots.
Alpine Avens - Geum montanum
Alpine Bartsia - Bartsia alpina
 Alpine Clematis - Clematis alpina
Globeflower - Trollius europaeus
There were a number of primulas
 Least Primrose - Primula minima
Auricula - Primula auricula
Sticky Primrose - Primula glutinosa
 and of course the most widspread was
 Birds Eye Primrose - Primula farinosa

Less familiar are the Louseworts
Leafy Lousewort - Pedicularis recutita

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