Lift Off!

There was a ridge of salsify plants in seed bloom and a storm coming up quick.

I wanted to capture the moment when a gust loosed a seed.

This was as close as I got.

Still, it’s amazing to watch the seeds lift off. To touch one is to feel fragility and sturdiness in the same instant. It’s an odd sensation. Something akin to the feathery tension of a bird’s wing.

Salsify means “follower of the sun,” a name given by the ancient Greeks who admired the plant’s design and architecture.

More recently, botanists have discovered that the seeds’ parachutes can easily sail thousands of feet into the air and fly over entire mountain ranges!