Jun. 17, 2018

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Virginia snakeroot is hard to spot, at least for me.  This shot of a darker flower is from Ives Preserve, where it was found a few years ago.  It was spotted by a Botany Club member as I was leading them through the preserve.  I had been walking there for decades without seeing this.  The next year I was leading another group in the same area and stopped to show them another rare species.  I then mentioned that snakeroot was nearby, and looked down to take my next step. I realized I was standing on one.  In the background of these images are strange stems with what looks like a bud at the top.  These are self-fertilizing flowers that never open.  They look a bit like charmer's snakes, rearing up, and may account for the snakeroot and serpentaria epithets.