Shabbona County Park is a [publicly accessible] postage stamp spring woodland in a sea of corn and soy.
Tiptoeing through the robust carpet of spring ephemerals. Cutleaf toothworts, woodland phlox, rue anemone, wild leeks, spring beauties, Dutchman’s breeches, trout lilies, mayapples, trilliums.
Dutchman’s breeches (Dicentra cucullaria
) flowers with a pinkish tinge my camera failed to capture well. An ant says gimme dat nectar.
The soft, lovely foliage of those britches.
Bubblegum pink bulblets of Dutchman’s breeches. Squirrel corn’s (Dicentra canadensis
) are orange. I replanted this fellow, but this place is carpeted with these guys.
A colony of white trout lily (Erythronium albidum
. Can you make out their white, nodding flowers?
There is garlic mustard at this park, especially on the edges of the area dense with ephemerals, but within the spring wildflower patches, garlic mustard doesn’t seem to be able to get well-established past the seedling stage, seen here. This was my first visit to this park, so we’ll see if that holds true over this year at the least.
phenology (n): study of the influence of climate on recurring natural phenomena
1881, from German (phänologisch, Karl Fritsch, 1853) from Latin phaeno-, from Greek phaino-, from phainein “to show”
Show yourselves, little plants of Maramech Forest Preserve! It’s early April, time for some of you to wake up.
Hello skunk cabbage & marsh marigold. Laying low this year after last year’s early arrival eh?
Hello extremely small currant leaves. Welcome back after your hibernation. I hope it was comfortable inside of those leaf buds.
Hello Viburnum flower buds. When you burst you look like brains.
The following plants are spring ephemerals.
These guys live in woodlands and bloom early in the year before the tree leaves come out.
That way, they can take advantage of the higher sunlight levels.
Hello tiny trillium leaves. You have an exquisite mosaic.
Hello cutleaf toothwort?
Hello baby spring beauty?
Hello tiniest Dicentra spp. flowers I’ve ever seen.
Are you a squirrel corn or a Dutchman’s breeches? If I’d looked at your bulblets I’d know.
Anyhow, your foliage is already magnificent.
Hello little waterleaf. Nice spots.