Spring Woodland Flora: Page 2, Norris Spring, Norris Fall, Riverwalk, Summer Woodland
2 Araceae (Arum)
Arisaema triphyllum Jack and Jill in the Pulpit: 2 leaves with 3 leaflets & spathe, green-purple hermaphroditic flowers: male flowers on upper of spadix, female on lower, change sex, trap fungus knats. male plants dormant in summer. Indian Turnip: corms & milky sap contain CA oxalate unless dried.
Symplocarpus foetidus Skunk Cabbage: spathe 27F warmer (accelerated respiration): beetles & spiders. flowers apetalous, 4 tiny sepals: carrion flies in air current, early pollen for bees. Leaf buds start in fall, open when spathe begins to wilt after flowers, red berries.
Aristolochiaceae (Birthwort)
Asarum canadense Wild Ginger: maroon flower in crotch between 2 hairy petioles. Apetalous; 3 sepals, decayed fruit scent: beetles, flies. rhizome spreads along flood plains.Swamp Buttercup.> Asian ginger: Zingiber officinale, Zingiberaceae. Elaiosome, shade tolerant.
Berberidaceae (Barbary)
Jeffersonia diphylla Twinleaf: 8-9 petals suggests Bloodroot but less brilliant, rich damp woods, limestone soils: 4 sepals fall, 8 stamens, 1 pistil, clear sap. Basal leaves only, almost divided butterfly wings, rhizome, leathery capsule with elaiosome destroyed by rodents or removed by ants.
Podophyllum peltatum Mayapple: poisonous except fruit meat. 6-petaled flowers in axil of 2-leaved plants, lime-like berries ripen in July? Circular colonies average 40 years. Podophyllin treats genital warts. European Mandrake (Manroot) is Mandragora officinarum Solanaceae (Tomato).
Boraginaceae (Forget-Me-Not)
Mertensia virginica Virginia Bluebells (Cowslip): upper leaves reduced to bracts, succulent hollow stem fragile, rhizome, preferably from seed. Buds pink (acidic), turn blue (basic) from Anthocyanin litmus: signal to pollinators; also protect leaves from UV. Bees chew thru flower: nectar robbers?
Brassicaceae (Cruciferae)
Dentaria laciniata (now Cardamine concatenata) Cut-leaved Toothwort (old English plant): tooth-like scales on peppery tuber, 4 X-shaped petals, silique pods. Stems rise directly from rhizomes, whorl of 3 leaves divided into 3 sharply-toothed segments. Cabbage, Turnip family: Broccoli, Sprouts, Radish.
Geranium maculatum Wild Geranium: pod splits from bottom, eject seeds when dry. Rhizomes contain tannin. Nectar guides on 5 petals, 5 thin green sepals, hermaphroditic: male then female stages, pollinated by solitary wasps. Pelargonium x hortorum Garden Geranium same family, S. Africa.
Viola sororia Common Blue Violet: Fritillary host. Vitamin A&C; 2 types flowers: spring 4 petals + spurred lower for landing, nectar guides on 2 side petals; summer cleistogamous: no petal, never open, self-fertilized. Elaiosome. In all 120 counties, from 1893 World's Fair.