Mariton: Wildflower Walk

May 3, 2015

by Tim Burris, Preserve Manager.  Photos by Carole Mebus. 

This spring, flowers are about one week behind last year.  And last year was about a week behind average for blooming dates at Mariton.  Of course, I didn’t know that when I scheduled a Wildflower Walk back in early March.  We did manage to see a variety of things in bloom on Saturday, but many plants had flower buds that will be opening in the next week or two.   There should be a lot of good flowers next weekend when we do the Migratory Bird Census.

MEBUS GingerMainTrailMariton0502

One of flowers that will last for a long time and just started blooming is the Wild Ginger (Asarum canadense).  You have to get down low to find the blossoms, and they are often hidden under leaves that fell last fall.

MEBUS RedTrilliumRiverLookoutTrailMariton0502

Another one that is worth getting down low to enjoy is the Purple Trillium (Trillium erectum).  Carole laid down on the trail to get the photo above.  Three leaves, three bracts, three petals.  Can you guess how it got the name Tri llium?

MEBUS WhiteTrilliumMaritonWoodsTrail0502

We can’t show the Purple without the White Trillium (T. graniflorum).  This year, either because of long winter or extended dry spell, many plants seem awfully small.  The next weeks will be exciting as the Solomon’s Seals begin blooming.  The Showy Orchis has sent up leaves and will be blooming in a week or so.  There were a few Perfoliated Bellworts blooming Saturday, but more to come.  The Mayapples had some flower buds, but also many more to come.  Stay tuned, or get out there yourself.