Thursday, April 11, 2019

Dowagiac Woods April 8 2019

 Monday April 8 2019
Marie and I visited Dowagiac Woods in southwest Michigan.  We knew it was early to see wildflowers blooming, we also knew we would at least see Hepatica blooming. 

Notice the various colors and the different number of petal-like sepals of these Sharp-lobed Hepatica.  All growing in the same preserve, amazing! 
Some "petals" were deep purple, pale violet, pure white, pink edged, deep rose, all absolutely beautiful! 
Some of the flower heads measured 1 1/2 inches across!  Some plants had six "petals", some up to 14 petals.  I enjoyed each and every hepatica we saw that day. 
It was a beautiful day, sunny with temps starting at 47, and as high as 69. 

Tons of Wild Leek leaves!

Another flowering plant that we saw hundreds of was Harbinger-of-Spring!  It is a very tiny little flower, also an early bloomer.

We found some Bloodroot blooming.

We saw just a few Marsh Marigolds blooming down a hill in a wet area.  They are like bright sunshine flowers!

 In this same swampy place I found Golden Saxifrage!  We saw this tiny flowering plant at Happy Boots last week. 

And Skunk Cabbage

We heard frogs, and saw a Garter Snake, a few bees, and a butterfly.

We found one Purple Cress blooming, several more with buds.
Only a few Spring Beauty were fully open, this one was a beauty.

Scarlet Cup  This beautiful woodland fungus grows on decaying wood in damp places under the leaf litter.

Here is more of what we saw...

Trout Lily in bud 

 Red Maple flowers


 Ohio Buckeye bud

Two different types of ferns...

Trillium leaves

Blue Cohosh sprout

Virginia Waterleaf - No flower yet

 In about three weeks - almost every inch of these woods will be blooming with wildflowers, including
Blue-Eyed Mary, Large-flowered Trillium, Trout Lily, Spring Beauty, Dutchman's Breeches, and more!


Allen Norcross said...

Wow, spring is happening there much faster than here! I stopped on my way home tonight to check on spring beauties, trout lilies and coltsfoot and didn't see any.
I never knew that hepatica came in so many colors. They're beautiful flowers!
I'm going to have to check on bloodroot but I think it's still early for it here, along with marsh marigolds.
I'd love to find harbinger of spring too. Maybe this weekend.
Thanks for a beautiful taste of spring!

Anonymous said...

You touched the tip of the iceberg with all the different sorts of hepatica flowers. Amazing!
Look at that tubular structure at the base of the Harbinger-of-spring. I never noticed that before.
The Bloodroot clearly shows the arrangement of its yellow anthers on the stamens and the creamy stigma topping the green pistil. You know how I love progression photos! Bloodroot leaves look so caring, clasping the stem like that.
Ah, Marsh Marigold flowers are a bit of sunshine! See the different arrangement of the stamens and the multiple pistils?
Hard to see anything on the Golden Saxifrage besides its eight brick-red stamens, even with a hand lens.
What a contrast between the green growing plants and the generally dead-looking forest floor.
Purple Cress just starting the year with its first blossom. Aw.
Spring Beauty and its pink anthers. I remember looking online for plants with pink anthers and I found more than I thought I would.
Scarlet Cup, so aptly named. You caught the Trout Lily bud before it bent over!
The Red Maple flowers are so tiny, yet they flood all the tree tops in the forest with color! Amazing.
The Ohio Buckeye bud is showing the future flower inside. So cool.
This has been the best post yet! I keep finding more and more in your photos. Thanks for posting. M :)

Dave said...

It’s amazing that you are so far ahead of us. Hepatica are now just starting . Everything is brown still. Late this year. Thanks for posting the Future

Plants Amaze Me said...

Thanks Allen, hopefully this weekend you will see more spring flowers. Hepatica does vary from one plant to the next, I'm not sure why. Dowagiac Woods is quite damp and the ground is mostly clay. It has been cool here, with a bit of snow on the ground yesterday. Good luck!

Plants Amaze Me said...

Marie, I do like to see the hepatica and we made our first visit to Dowagiac Woods at just the right time! We need to find more plants on hillsides so we can look with our hand lens without crouching down. I like what you said about the Bloodroot leaf looking so caring, I thought the same thing but didn't mention it. You are poetic. So we will give Dowagiac Woods two weeks and go again? Maybe...

Plants Amaze Me said...

Dave, Around home flowers are very slow to bloom, Dowagiac is roughly 75 miles to the south of here. They can be a week to 10 days ahead of us as far as bloom time. So yes, I guess I did post the Future! How is that new pup Gus? I'm still liking this weather, cool, few bugs, and plenty of sunshine! :)