Anyone who enjoys wandering through nature—whether garden or wilderness—knows there are places on our planet that transcend description. Several years ago, I traveled for a month photographing on the South Island of New Zealand, and each day was spent in speechless awe (the majestic scenery in The Lord of the Rings films only hints at the experience of being there…). On a recent walk along the Potomac River, I was reminded that I don't have to go so far to feel such wonder. Following a muddy path along the Virginia side of the river near Turkey Run Park, I found myself suddenly in acres of blooming bluebells. In sun-dappled shade, the pale green of spring foliage was sprinkled with thousands of bluebells, their tall stalks crowned with clusters of tiny sky blue bell-shaped flowers. There were so many, that when a slight breeze rustled the plants, I expected to hear them tinkling. Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica) are wildflowers native to eastern North America. The pure light blue bells open from pink buds, and the two colors combine in the flowering clusters as if designed for the adornment of fairies. I admit I had taken this walk in hope of finding bluebells, but standing among so many was like being in a dream—disorienting and delightful.