Wednesday, April 15, 2015

First 'Wild' Flowers

The first 'wildflowers' here are the bright yellow Coltsfoot, and the Skunk Cabbage.  It's a little hard to label these as wildflowers though, 'cause the Coltsfoot was coming up through the driveway where we park our trailer, and the Skunk Cabbage was growing in the ditch!  And Coltsfoot can be a bit invasive in places.  But they are certainly not cultivated garden plants, and they are the first in the spring (along with Hepatica, which I haven't seen yet).

Coltsfoot sends its bright yellow flower up on a separate stalk before any leaves appear.  The leaves are quite large, appear later, and last right into the fall.

Here you can see several other flower buds just emerging from the gravel; there will be a little cluster of these in a day or two.

And down the road at the edge of a swamp is the Skunk Cabbage.  It literally comes up right through the snow, and again the reddish purple 'flower' comes first.  Here the first green leaves are showing up.  They're even larger than the Coltsfoot leaves.

Here are the actual flowers of the Skunk Cabbage, the small yellow clusters found on the spadix, inside the spathe, both of which are purple in colour.  I think I was smart this time and used a fill-in flash to light up the flowers in the interior, which are very hard to see.

Won't be long til we have lots more 'real' wildflowers.


17 comments:

  1. Wow! Now that's sure different looking skunk cabbage that we have around here. I love this pretty purple thing, though! :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, the western Skunk Cabbage is quite different from that in the east.

      Delete
  2. Great to see the first flowers. Your skunk cabbage is so different from ours, which is bright yellow and a bit taller. It is everywhere in the swampy areas right now - and I like the scent.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The Coltsfoot seems to grow where there is no dirt? What a welcome colour to celebrate spring's arrival.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Whadda ya mean, that Coltsfoot and Skunk Cabbage aren't "real" wildflowers? Oh yes indeed they are, and the early pollinators are very glad to see them. As am I. They are a sure sign that winter is over and gone.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're right of course. I'm just anxious to get out for walk in the woods where I'll start seeing those other spring wildflowers 2-3 weeks from now.

      Delete
  5. I don't think I've ever seen either of these. Very interesting shots.

    ReplyDelete
  6. The coltsfoot is so bright and pretty! Glad you are getting some color in your forests.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The coltsfoot was flowering a month ago up the mountains in Switzerland, really coming through the snow. And here in London I spotted masses of leaves in the wood yesterday.
    I never saw a skunk cabbage before (I don't think). How big are those flowers? It looks almost tropical.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love the names, not plants we have here in Texas. Great shots. Hope you are enjoying the warming temperatures.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Coltsfoot is beautiful. Did you know that it is a European plant that was brought here as medication. It was used as a cough medicine!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Lovely photos . Our flowers here wild and garden are getting there ! Thanks for sharing , Have a good day !

    ReplyDelete
  11. I see DJan said just what I was going to say. : )

    ReplyDelete
  12. I found some of the coltsfoot too and didn't know what it was. thanks for the id.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Coltsfoot is one of my spring favorites. A sure spring sign.

    ReplyDelete