Saturday, April 14, 2012

Walking and wildflowers in a couple of local preserves

Today was a sunny day in the upper 60s, a real treat, so Holly and I got out to look for some more blooming wildflowers.  We started at the Limestone Rise Preserve in Knox.  I visited here a week before, but without Holly, and the hepatica was everywhere.  So we paid a return visit to start off the afternoon.  The hepatica was still pretty widespread, but had declined some since last week.

This week, the spring beauty had come on strong, and will soon overtake the hepatica as the dominant bloom here.

Spring beauty
Last week, there was a mystery flower that I thought might be a red trillium, but it looked very different from the others I'd seen.  Usually, the leaves are open wide before the flower bud opens, but not this one.  Today proved me right - before and after shots below.

Red trillium
It will be a couple of weeks yet before Limestone Rise becomes a sea of white trillium, and that will be well worth another return trip.  

Next, we moved on to the Margaret Burke Wildlife Management Area, just a few minutes away, and a place we'd never been to before.  There aren't a lot of trails here, but as a short add-on, it was about right.  There were some nice trout lilies in bloom here, with many more still to follow.

Trout lily
Blue cohosh is not very exciting, but it, too, was beginning to bloom, with its small yellow flowers.

Blue cohosh
We also saw a few assorted violets, colt's foot, and wild strawberry, but that was about all.  It's still early in the scheme of things, and many more blooms will begin to appear in the weeks to come.

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