Friday, April 24, 2009

A Tale of Two Pretties...

Squirrel-corn and Dutchman’s Breeches, can you tell them apart?

Dicentra canadensis, Squirrel-corn

and now....

Dicentra cucullaria, Dutchman's Breeches

We would be pleased to have you join us on Sunday April 26, at 1:00 PM for the annual GMAS walk at Fowlers Woods, and the Dicentra should be in good bloom. The question will be- which one is it? Each year we study the differences between these two pretties (my apologies to Dickens). I have heard every conceivable story from “pants-on-a-line” to “white bleeding-hearts” and there is some truth to be found in both.

Dicentra is in the Fumitory family, and both of these plants are close relatives to the pink and red “Bleeding Hearts” and bright yellow “Corydalis” your grandmother grew.
While they are relatively easy to tell apart while in bloom- look for the yellow on the Dutchman’s Breeches, it makes it a snap- they can be madding to decipher by the green vegetation alone. Squirrel-corn leaflets have a glaucous blue-green cast, while the Dutchman’s leaflets are yellow-green.

Do you have other suggestions for telling them apart?

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