Images of the day

Jan. 20, 2021

Here it is! THE buttercup. Around the world, when people think buttercup, this is most often the one. Those shiny bright yellow petals are the epitome of buttercup. Common buttercup may be native in Alaska and Greenland, but otherwise has been introduced from Eurasia. It blooms in fields and other mostly open areas in every state and province except AR, FL, HI, LA, OK, TX, and YT, and is on SPM. 5/28/12, Ingham Co MI. Buttercup family, Ranunculaceae.

Jan. 19, 2021

Narrowleaf spleenwort is a common woodland fern. The young shoots of related species are eaten, but I haven't found a specific reference to this one. Why is it photographed at an angle? Obviously to get the bottom of the frond, I had to be manipulating things. I could have easily gone with the more natural direction of straight up. But this way, you get more in the frame. Straight up or even straight across would mean you get a shorter length of frond from the same distance. And maybe it's less boring? Anyway, you'll see this strategy a lot as you look at images here. Narrowleaf spleenwort grows in AL, AR, CT(E), DE, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD(T), MI, MN(T), MO, MS, NC, NH(E), NJ(E), NY(V), OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WV, ON, and QC. Fulton Co OH, (/27/14. Family Diplaziopsidaceae

Jan. 18, 2021

Cow-wheat is a small plant of forests. These flowers are only up to a half inch long. This is a hemiparasitic species, attaching itself to tree roots to get water and solutes. One recent study that traced carbon isotopes indicates cow-wheat may also acquire carbon from its hosts. Does that make this plant hemicarnivorous? Cow-wheat grows in CT, DE, GA, ID IL, IN(R), KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MT, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH(T), PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV, in all provinces except NT, NU, and YT, and on SPM. Roscommon Co MI, 6/30/11. Broomrape family, Orobanchaceae.

Jan. 17, 2021

Is Chinese wisteria the 'quintessential' garden plant as Wiki says? Mine seems to think so. It keeps sending out runners, trying to take over the whole space. One particularly creepy one in California covers an acre, and is recognized as the worlds largest flowering plant. I imagine that's only among the petaliferous, since Pando, a quaking aspen, is larger but without petals. While I keep amputating the creeps, I would never consider getting rid of the plant. Too beautiful, and the fragrance of the flowers rivals any you can find. Although maybe I should think twice?
The champion wistaria (that's how they spell it in Sierra Madre) is said to have destroyed the house it was planted by! Chinese wisteria has now crept into the wild in AL, AR, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, IL, KY, MA, MD, MI, MO, MS, NC, NY, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, and WV. Cultivated, Lenawee Co MI, 4/29/12. Bean family, Fabaceae.

Jan. 16, 2021

This is an embarrassment! When an image is selected for posting, I check the identification. Grasses in particular. I struggle with grass ID, maybe because I'm allergic to them. This was originally identified as D. compressa. But I now know it was hundreds of miles out of range for that species, or any other Danthonia except D. spicata. So here you have poverty oatgrass. And now I have to let Michigan Flora know the main illustration for D. compressa is wrong. Embarrassing. This does have kind of interesting flowers. Poverty oatgrass grows most often in impoverished soils like sand and rock, in every state and province except CA, HI, NV, and UT, and on GL and SPM. Wayne CO MI, 6/20/14. Grass family, Poaceae.