Sage blooms in Abilene

Sage blooming in Abilene, Texas, September 20, 2011.

This late summer, thundershowers fall infrequently around Abilene, Texas.  Yet, some showers do fall about this west Texas city that lies close to the Brazos River and Buffalo Gap, a niche in the hills that allowed buffalo to migrate from north to central Texas in the nineteenth century, following the shortgrass and bluestem in their casual browsing.

Two days ago as I worked late at my office at Cisco College, I walked by three large sagebrush by the back entry door.  A monarch butterfly floated by, floating and fluttering as if they are playing, and landed on one of the blossoms.  But before I could draw my iPhone from my coat pocket, it flew away and out of my range to snap a picture.  Alas, I was too slow on the draw.  I followed it to a green clump of slender grasses and lost it, despite my intent search.  The monarch had buried itself from my eyes, thinking me a raptor?

Yesterday, following the blooming sagebrush and my failure to photograph the butterfly, it rained about the city, to the north and west particularly.  A rainbow emerged with the sun setting to the east.  And, this morning, the temperatures were the coolest since May, a 61 degrees before sunup.

I think, if sagebrush blooms, can rain be far behind?  And playing monarchs about the purple sage?  Not far behind either.

Three sagebrush with blossoms at the back door of Cisco College, September 22, 2011. The monarch flew and hid in the bushes to the upper right of the photograph.



Filed under Monarch Butterfly, Plants and Shrubs, Sagebrush

10 responses to “Sage blooms in Abilene

  1. Oh, my goodness, Jack! Yet another confirmation of the purple sage / rain connection! I’m thrilled for you – not just for the sage and rain, but for the rainbow and monarch, too. We’ve been a little short of such pleasures this summer.

    Last week, we received .81″, and two days later, I saw the first butterflies I’ve seen in weeks – a small yellow one, and a smaller dusty brown and gray. And, since the temperatures have moderated somewhat, many of the plants have begun to bloom again – especially bougainvillea, Cape Honeysuckle and so on.

    Here’s to spring in autumn!

  2. Ah, Riders of the Purple Sage…. monarch butterflies and rainbows. Your words are always so refreshing. Thank you.

  3. I just talked to a friend in Kerrville, who tells me the sage are blooming riotously, all over town. Get out your waders!

  4. I sure hope the rain will follow the blossoms, and I bet that cooler weather feels good!

  5. That Monarch butterfly might have waited a little longer. How elusive they are those butterflies! Sage is a butterfly flower. But here where I live the sage don’t see the Monarch. They don’t come here. But the Brimstone and the other pretties are fluttering around the bush. I wish the Monarch might move some of its quarters to the sage of Jutland.
    You’ll catch the Monarch next time, Jack! Maybe you’ll have to lure in a corner and surprise it?

    Have a nice week-end!

    Most of our butterflies have gone now. Autumn. Rain. Lots of rain. Maybe a single red admiral in a sunbeam on a day without rain. Tomorrow might be sunny….

  6. So happy to hear of any signs of rain in the places you and the butterflies are traveling of late. We had one week of that sweet fall feel. Then this week, one final shot at summer for the heat seekers. Bring on the cool, moist, fall colored days. Until then, I hope you have a few more fluttered sightings Jack.
    Restful weekend to you,

  7. And to think the journey that those Monarchs are likely enduring from God knows where to somewhere in Mexico, perhaps as far as the Baja.

    They likely were looking for a good history lesson by a well known professor at Cisco College.

  8. Cowboy

    Yep Jack – the old wives tail says that it will rain within 10 days of the sage blooming, Let’s hope that will hold true for your part of the world.
    Great photo of the Sage blooming !

    Take care –

  9. Wonder if the sage at Flying Hat Ranch has bloomed? I wonder if anyone there has seen any monarchs? I bet poor Star has.

  10. Pingback: October in Texas: dusting and sunflowers | Sage to Meadow

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