Monday, March 5 – took a quick walk on the Cabin John Trail. Most of the green forbs were aliens, though the new foliage of a few ephemerals was coming up.
There was one small clump of round-lobe hepatica (Anemone americana; Ranunculaceae) with a few buds opening. It’s early, but not too early, for this species to be flowering.
And a few clumps of Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica; Boraginaceae), one of which was starting to bloom. This is quite early, but with the ephemerals I often see one or two blooming on either end of the bell curve. Peak bloom for bluebells is probably at least three weeks away.
I know this is irrelevant, but do you happen to know the species of the oak that dropped the leaf in the lower right corner of the picture of the Virginia bluebells? I know it is not a blackjack oak. It looks just like our valley oak, but is thousands of miles away.
I don’t know – oak ID is tricky, and this isn’t much to go on. There are 22 known species in Maryland (https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/viewChecklist.php?genus=Quercus). If I had to guess I’d guess Q. alba.
I think that round-lobe hepatica (Anemone americana; Ranunculaceae) is one of the wildflowers I’ve been trying to identify! This is my first Spring in KY and every walk in the woods uncovers a new floral treasure!
Nice! I am glad to have helped. More/better pictures of this plant coming soon (I was out shooting earlier today). I don’t have a key or anything like that on the blog but try looking in the archives for March and April of the past several years if you’re trying to identify more or your finds.
Pingback: If There’s One, Maybe There Are More | Elizabeth's Wildflower Blog