Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Spring Ephemerals

Trout lily, Adder’s-tongue, Dog-tooth violet, whatever you like to call it, Erythonium americanum is a woodland staple in Ohio. Stories abound, it takes seven years to bloom and the leaves look like the dappled shading on a trout. It sports six tepals (petals), which open and recurve with the morning sun.

A close relative is Erythonium albidum, the white dog-tooth violet: but it is not a violet at all! It is in the family Liliaceae. Let's compare this to another Erythonium, the closely related Goldenstar featured a blog entry or two ago. You will note the the Goldenstar is not recurved, and its seed has a much more pronounced “beak”.

Spring is here, and in spite of today’s snow, I plan to embrace it! I am headed to Texas tomorrow, and will try to give you an update on spring migration as I see it headed your way!

It is a tough job, but someone has to do it. :)

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