Wednesday, April 13, 2011

First Blooms at Fowler Woods

Fowler Woods State Nature Preserve is well known for its fabulous spring ephemeral display. The earliest flower, Harbinger-of-Spring was all but spent yesterday, but the next blooms are queuing up for their annual appearance. ... Blue Cohosh, Caulophyllum thalictroides These odd purplish-brown flowers will give way to a more recognizable plant in midsummer. Blue Cohosh is named for the blue berries held roughly a foot high off the rich forest's floor. The berry is known to be toxic, and yet is has been used medicinally since the time of the Native Americans. So if it didn't kill you, I guess it just might cure you. It is still touted in many "women's" formulas today. Hmmm.... ... Mayapple, Podophyllum peltatum These early "May" flowers are now pushing through the soil, looking much like miniature beach umbrellas. Closed now, they will be opening against the sun of coming days, certain to be warmer than the 45 degrees offered of late. ... We can check back in a week when the Marsh-marigolds should be in good display. It is not-to-be-missed!

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