April 15 2015 For this adventure, Marie and I went to Flower Creek Dunes Nature Preserve owned by Land Conservancy of West Michigan. "Located in northern Muskegon County, Flower Creek Dunes Nature Preserve protects unspoiled dune habitat along the lakeshore. A boardwalk leading to an overlook provides panoramic views of Lake Michigan and the surrounding dunes. Trail length: 1.2 miles (round trip from Meinert Park). Approximate street address: 8501 Meinert Park Road, Montague, MI"
As you can see the sky was a beautiful blue and so was Lake Michigan. The next place that day was Park Road end lake access which is in Oceana County.
Same pretty sky, same pretty lake.
Our third stop of the day was south, back into Muskegon County, to Henderson Lake Park.
Here we found Trailing Arbutus blooming, mostly white flowers along with pink flowers on plants nearby.
2015 04 24 My sister, Sugar and I went for an adventure to Aman Park in Ottawa County. I took her along the trail that follows Sand Creek through the park starting from the south bridge. It is a wonderful meandering path with many wildflowers, interesting trees, and nice views of the creek.
Dutchmen Breeches were in bloom.
Some of the wildflowers like these Bloodroot were still wrapped up from the cool morning. But later opened nicely.
Some Large-Flowered Trillium were open but not the hillsides full like later in the week.
After Aman we stopped at Riverside park, also in Ottawa County, to check out the wildflowers there. Here are some that we found.
Trout Lily, the white variety
Bunches of Spring Beauty
One more stop in Ottawa County, Connor Bayou County Park. This park is along the Grand River, as is Riverside Park.
The river was calm.
We found many Round-Lobed Hepatica blooming! Beautiful flowers.
Next time out with Marie, April 28, Hudsonville Nature Center in Hudsonville Michigan.
Marsh Marigolds lined the trail.
Here you will find ravines, meadows, swamps, a creek, and they each had special wildflowers blooming.
A hillside of blooming Dutchmen Breeches.
Wild Geranium was blooming for us, the first time this year.
We went on to Paris Park in Kent County, we have been here before. The last time we visited, we renamed the park Snakes-in-the-Grass Park because we came across so many snakes. Well, the park lived up to its name, we saw over 10 snakes!
"The park consists of forest and wetlands. Plaster Creek winds through this approximately 69.6 acre park. Paris Park is undeveloped, however, there is a paved pathway that allows all visitors the opportunity to view the numerous deer and wildlife that inhabit this park. Currently Paris Park is owned by Kent County and leased to the City of Kentwood."
Another stop along Plaster Creek in Kent County was
I think this plant is Lesser Celandine (Ranunculus ficaria) apparently a very invasive plant.
There is a bridge over Plaster Creek and many trails on both sides of the creek.
Along with many other spring wildflowers we saw these bunches of Spring Beauty.
The next day, April 29th a group of us went to Aman to see if the trillium were open. They were! This time we walked along Sand Creek from the northern bridge to the southern bridge. Another perfect day.
All the dots of white in the photo below are Large-Flowered Trillium! Thousands.
That same evening, Mike and I walked at Riverside Park in Ottawa County. The sun was setting, turning everything gold.
A Bloodroot with seed and leaf facing the sun.
April was a month of nice weather and the start of a great Michigan wildflower season.