wildflower identification


Last night I realized that, since I’m the only person who has ever seen these two plants, until someone tells for sure me what they are, I can pretend they’re my own private species. So until further notice I’m naming them Podophyllum tulipa, the Mayapple Tulip.

Why not have some fun with it? Meanwhile, I continue to contact plant people and I hope at some point someone will come see them.


Allium ursinum, Amaryllidaceae

If you have ever walked in the woods in temperate parts of Europe, particularly in the British Isles, you might have happened to smell something garlicky during spring, right when the buds are breaking up in the trees. Ramsons, wood or bear’s garlic - it is known in a few more ways just in English - was probably the culprit. Here in Scotland its white star-shaped flowers follow the small and often solitary ones of A. paradoxum, another common Allium which I’ll write about in a different post. 

All parts of the plant are edible and often harvested from the wild, but it is also easy to establish in a garden, especially in the shady and humid areas avoided by many other plants with higher light requirements. If you are foraging in the woods I would suggest harvesting the plant when the flower stalk has already given away its identity, together with the smell, as the young shoots emerging from the ground can be pretty similar to some toxic spring geophytes, like Convallaria majalis, the lily of the valley. I remember A. ursinum in the woods in northern Italy, but it looks a lot more at home and plentiful here in Scotland. 


4.9.17 - Something I can’t quite ID. I know it’s something in the nightshade family, probably the Solanum genus. The closest species ID I can determine is Solanum dulcamara, but it’s not quite right - the S. dulcamara species has a set of fused stamens around the pistil, and these don’t seem to have that morphology. The only thing I can think is that perhaps the anthers split apart once the berry starts to form, which it looks like it is - the green at the base of the style is a swollen ovary. Any ideas?

Edit - THANK YOU to @werewolf-kid for the ID! This bugger isn’t even in the same family as the nightshades!

Lady’s Slipper
(Cypripedium acaule)

Lady Slippers were EVERWHERE! I’ve never seen so many of them! Like, there are probably hundreds in this spot! Normally, it is pretty rare to see just one. But today, they were as far as the eye could see. It was hard to photograph the magnitude of them, because they were spaced out… but it was amazing none the less. So so so many of them! <3