Many books and websites are used to identify the plants, including:
“Manual of the Vascular Plants of Texas” by Correll & Johnston
“Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country” by Marshall Enquist
“Wildflowers of Texas” by Michael Eason
"Wildflowers of Texas" by Geyata Ajilvsgi
"Little Big Bend" by Roy Morey
“Cacti of Texas” by Michael Powell, James Weedin and Shirley Powell
“Rare Plants of Texas” by Poole, Carr, Price and Singhurst
“Shinners & Mahler’s Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas" by Diggs, Lipscomb, and O'Kennon
•USDA Plants - www.plants.usda.gov
•Integrated Taxonomic Information System - www.itis.gov
•Biota of North America Program - www.bonap.org
•Southwest Environmental Information Network - www.swbiodiversity.org
•Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - www.wildflower.org
•Wildflower Search - www.wildflowersearch.com
•Southwest Desert Flora - www.southwestdesertflora.com by Gene Spurla
•The American Southwest - www.americansouthwest.net
•Image Archive of Central Texas Plants - www.sbs.utexas.edu
•Catnapin Collections - www.catnapin.com by Jo Cox
•CactiGuide.com - https://cactiguide.com by Daiv Freeman
•Texas Cacti - thehibbitts.net/Cactus by Terry Hibbits
•Bennie Simpson’s Texas Native Shrubs - https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/ornamentals/nativeshrubs/
•Wildflowers of the Southern Rocky Mountains - www.rockymountainsflora.com by Marilyn Phillips
•Southeastern Arizona Wildflowers and Plants - www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/ by T. Beth Kinsey
All of the photographs were taken with digital cameras, primarily Nikon DSLRs, including D70, D200, D300S and (currently) D810. Most DSLR photos were taken with a Nikkor-Micro 70-180mm f/4.5-5.6 zoom macro lens. Other cameras used include aim-and-shoots Canon SD650, Nikon P7000 and Sony RSX-100III, and iPhone 6 and 7 Plus.
Some of the photos are products of the focus stacking technique to put into focus what I want and blur the rest. I use either the focus barrel or a Kirk FR-2 focussing rail.
Most photos were taken with natural light often using a diffuser to reduce shadows. In addition, some were made using a Nikon RC1 macro flash system.
Almost all photos are shot with camera RAW file format and developed with Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop (to a limited extent) and Color Efex4 Pro software on a Mac. For the focus stacks I use Helicon Focus software to process the images.
The processing steps consist of first identifying the plants and organizing them into collections in Lightroom and adding keywords. The photos are cropped and exposures adjusted before converting to JPEGs and uploading to my website using Blocs web development software.
Many of the photos on this site were taken while hiking. But along with that, mountain biking is a great way to get to some more remote wildflower sites, and it’s quicker than walking. My backpack is usually loaded with a camera, hiking tripod, biking equipment and water for the day. If it’s an aggressive ride, I’ll take my small Sony RX100-III camera, and for easier rides my DSLR with macro lens will be in the backpack.
© Tom Lebsack 2021
Banner photo: Bluebonnets near Llano, taken by Rick Capozza