April 27, 2011

Wildflower Wednesday: More Surprises

Here I am squeaking by again on a meme. But I just had to share these beauties before they fade. I took a walk in the woods and found some surprises.

Sanguinaria canadensis L.
It’s kind of embarrassing, but I didn’t even know we had Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis L.) on the property. As I’ve said before, I haven’t fully explored the wooded part of the lot. Sure, I’ve walked back there, but I haven’t documented all the plants. These little beauties were bobbing in the wind and their vivid white caught my eye as I scanned the horizon for wildflowers. In the morning, the flowers folded up to protect their centers, and later in the day they unfolded with the warmth and the sun.

On the other hand, I knew we had Mayapples (Podophyllum L.). I just didn’t know there were so many! 

Podophyllum L.
They’re carpeting the forest floor at this point. And I’d never captured photos of them before at this stage of their growth. I love this shot because it shows the foliage in a variety of forms—from tightly curled around the stem, to mostly unfurled. They’re not blooming yet, but Mayapples are a fun plant to watch—from emergence to bloom to fruitfulness.

Bugbane (Actaea racemosa L.) is making its annual expected appearance.

Actaea racemosa L.
This wildflower grows at the back of a planned perennial bed. It looks like a reaching hand right now, but later in the season it will tower over other plants in the garden, supplying structure and a frame for lower-growing plants.

I was actually on a hunt for one of my favorites—Trillium Grandiflorum. I didn’t see any emerging yet, but they’ll likely make an appearance any day now.

For more Wildflower Week posts, check out the excellent list at Clay and Limestone.


  1. Great capture of the map-apples. I love seeing them push out from under the leaves and slowly unfurl. I do like Sanguinaria canadensis and would love to have more~Charming little flowers. So glad you had these sweet surprises to share with all of us! gail

  2. I love bloodroot and may-apple...bloodroot came and went in a few days with the heat and no sign of may-apple although they will pop up soon...just love them and the hidden surprise of a flower underneath

  3. Great shots, Beth! Don't you love just walking through the woods (in my case the hills), and looking down and see all these little seedlings/plants beginning to emerge. You got a great pic of the may-apples unfurling. You must be so ready for spring now!

  4. So nice to be able to walk around and find little surprises! Love all your forest beauties. Nature is amazing!

  5. @Gail: Thanks for hosting the meme. I'm so enjoying all the wildflower postings this week!

    @Donna: Things are changing so rapidly right now it's hard to keep up. I think the Bloodroot is lasting here because it's in the woods, and we had another cold snap. The Forsythias, Tulips, and Magnolias are lasting longer than usual because of the temps, too. :)

    @Diane: Thanks! Yes, I'm looking forward to summer temps actually. I'm envious of your warm weather!

    @Holley: With this blog I'm even more excited than usual to get out into the woods and see what we have back there. I love having cultivated areas and wild areas on the same lot!

  6. You found some real treats. And your photos are beautiful...the Sanguinaria is gorgeous.

  7. Hi Beth,
    How wonderful to walk through your woods and find Mayapple and Bloodroot! I had to pay actual $$ to acquire those in my own gardens;-) I love seeing your photos...so 'natural'. I have also planted several Actea racemosa and love their white blooms. Mine are coming up but no blooms yet either. It was a big surprise when I found my first one, as I didn['t intentionally plant it! I think it came in a pot with another plant and was a tag-along. Since then, I've added a couple on purpose;-) Take care!

  8. Those May apples are such cool plants, I don't have the ideal spot for them but wish I did. :)

  9. @Sage: Thank you. Now I understand why I haven't seen the Sanguinaria before--they fade fast! But what a treat to find them!

    @Jan: There are so many plants to study and things to learn. Gardening, blogging, and comparing notes with other gardeners is such a joy! I am so pleased I started this blog and have had the pleasure of getting to know people like you!

  10. What a terrific find with the bloodroot! The mayapples are so cute at this stage--they look like little umbrellas, which would be very appropriate if you've had as much rain as we've had.

  11. I love the bloodroot! It's really pretty. I love the shape of the leaves. Mayapples remind me of little umbrellas. They must be handy in a storm!

  12. That's a pretty white bloom. I hope you find your trilliums blooming soon. How cool you have a wooded area to explore! I live on a small corner lot with no trees, but thankfully, the neighborhood has lots of trees.

  13. That bloodroot is really pretty, but it was the Podophyllum that caught my attention, what an extraordinary plant! Better luck on the trillium hunt next time.

  14. What a nice surprise - finding bloodroots! The first year we lived in the country, I crisscrossed the woods looking for spring ephemerals and never found any. I don't know if it's because of the deer or too much shade or ?

    I'm glad to have the opportunity to discover your discovery. :-)

  15. Discovering new wildflowers in the garden is (almost) always a pleasure! I loved yours.

  16. Great post! I remember buying Mayapples at a local plant sale a few years back only to realize I already had them on my property... I could have been selling them myself!

  17. @Perennial: I hope you can find a spot Mayapples if you like them. Mine are opening up now and the blooms can't be too far off!

    @Rose: Yes, the Bloodroot is so sweet. The flowers were gone in a couple of days. But the foliage is interesting, too. I've always loved the Mayapples--they're fascinating to watch all season long.

    @TS: Yes, the foliage with both plants is as fun as the flowers, and the flowers don't last long.

    @Sue: The woods always seem kind of mysterious to me. We let them go wild and then there's a natural transition from the woods to the perennials in the middle, and then the annuals/perennials/veggies close to the house.

  18. @Janet: Yes, the Mayapples are pretty nifty. I'm learning more about how the Native Americans used them for medicinal purposes. And they're fun to watch from emergence until they die back in the fall.

    @Entangled: It's so much fun having a blog because I feel like I want to keep exploring. I've documented about 80% of the plants in the main part of the garden, but there are so many more plants in the woods...

    @Dona: Yes, almost always. I guess some can be poisonous and invasive, but most are just fun to find and study!

    @Rebecca: That is funny, isn't it? That we have treasures right at home if we simply take the time to discover them. :) Thanks for the information on Morels. I've been looking, but I haven't found any yet. I'll keep hunting. :)

  19. What beautiful discoveries you've made. Our woods are still with snow... looking forward to my own walks.

  20. Carolyn: Sorry about the snow. I hope you have an amazing May!


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