01 May 2008

Blue Phlox

The pale violet, five petaled flowers radiate from the tip of the stem. Petals are wedged shaped and the stamen are completly hidden from view. Stems are hairy and sticky and the plant grows 10- 20 inches tall. Phlox comes from the Greek meaning "flame." The odor from this flower is very strong in the early evening and mainly in North America, the flower has 70 different species.

False Rue Anemone

Five white petals make up this dainty flower. They are very small and can range from 1/2- 3/4 inches wide, and are found in small clusters. The leaves are three parted and and deeply lobed. The plant grows 4-10 inches tall. The False rue anemone grow with other plants like it in small clusters froming a carpet like area.

Dutchman's Breeches

Many waxy white and yellow tipped flowers hang in rows from an arched stem. Each of these flowers has two inflated spurs that look like a tiny pair of pants and that is how this flower got its name. The leaves are very thin with many segments. A more common name for this is blue staggers which let people know that this is poisoinous. The flower has been known to kill many animals like cattle and such. This is only pollinated by bees but the can only reach the pollen and not the nectar.

Cut-Leaved Toothwort

This flower is also catagorized in the mustard family. The petals are usually white or light pink with harsh three segmented leaves with tooth like segements. These can grow 8-15 inches in its lifetime. Doctors have concluded that this plant would cure toothaches and that is how it got the name and also because the root is white and tooth like in appearance.

Spring Cress

4 white or pink petals form a cross together in this flower. The stem and leaves are small and rounded with some basal leaves present. These plants can grow 8-20 inches tall. The spring cress is catagorized in the "mustard" family of plants and the four petals and the stamen protrude from the corolla.

Blue Cohosh

A cluster of 6 pointed flowers that range in color from yellow-green to brown turn into blue berries as they mature. Each leaf segment has the shape of a tulip. The less mature plants have a waxy and white look to them becuase the leaves are developing. A stem on this flower usually has a blue-ish tint to it to make that easy to identify.

30 April 2008


The pale heart shaped leaf surround the stem bearing a single flower. The petals are very white with eight to ten petals. the sap is orange-ish in color. Indians used the sap as war paint and dye for clothes and other things. the root is somewhat poisonous and even with the factor, pioneers used a drop of sap on a lump of sugar as cough medicine. The roots are now used in the making of anti-plaque toothpaste. Because of its value, many plants are poached for the roots.

Common Violet

This flower has five petals and five sepals and the leaves tend to be heart shaped. The lower petal has a hollow spur which acts as a landing pad for insects. The violet is the Illinois state flower. The legend of the violet is that the goddess Io was loved by Zeus, to hide his love from his jealous wife, Zeus transformed Io into a cow. This made her cry and Zeus changed Io's tears into sweet smelling flowers.

Spring Beauty

This flower has few slender leaves that grow in pairs midway up the stem. It usually has 5 pink or white petals with dark pink veins. As many as 15 flowers can grow on a stalk and usually the lower flowers appear first. The spring beauty is eaten by deer because the roots are edible. This plant is very interesting to geneticists because it has an inconsistent amount of chromosomes. 72 different species of insects pollinate this flower.

Wild Leek

The leaves of this flower are among the first flowers to bloom in the spring, each plant has two or three broad smooth leaves that typically smell like onion. The leaves wither and die within the first couple of weeks of appearance and the actual flower part grows anytime between June and July. Both parts of this plant are edible and they were are very important part of the Indian and pioneer diets.


A large group of plants is characterized by the numerous stamens and pistils that form a button or cluster in the center of the flower. In many species the petals are absent and the sepals are showy like petals. The sepals often look waxy in nature. Legend say that to hold the flower next to your neck on the night of a full moon would drive you insane but we now know that some species of the buttercup can be poisonous. The name literally means "little frog."

Marsh Marigold

These flowers are large and range from 1"- 1.5" inches. They can have 5 through 9 petals or sepals. These are very distinct because of their bright yellow color with yellow veins. The Leaves are described as being kidney shaped with thick hollow stems. Usually found in wet areas and can be isolated. The plant was used as medicine in the medieval times and can be referred to as cowslip.

Wood Anemone

The wood anemone is a woodland plant usually with 5 petal-like sepals. The leaves are divided into between 3 to 5 leaflets. They are about one inch wide and the color can range from white to pink petals. The name anemone comes from the Greek god of the wind Anemos. Another Greek legend say that Venus was crying for her lost lover and everywhere her tears fell, an anemone grew.

Great White Trillium

With three broad white leaves, this flower is categorized as a trillium. Trillium literally means "three parted lily." This one is the largest of this kind ranging from 12"-18" tall. With age they can turn to pink. A superstition is said that if a trillium is picked off a mountain, it will cause rain. The white trillium is a symbol for modest beauty.

Trout Lily

This flower has two basal leaves that are spotted. They can be white, pink, and shades of purple. It is a solitary plant meaning that they are found alone. The petals are reflexed and this flower matures very slowly and at around the seventh year is when they flower usually develops. Deer eat the leaves and when properly prepared people can eat them as well.