Hello everyone! I hope this post finds you all well and virus free. As I mentioned in the last Six On Saturday post, I went on a walk in the late afternoon and took another 138 photos. I always take multiple photos and it was windy so a lot of photos were kind of blurry. Plus, some of the flowers, as usual, were very tiny and didn’t cooperate well.
This post will be for newly identified plants only on April 11 except for one… It was a WOW moment and I am sure you will agree when you see it! It is not a newly identified plant but it definitely got my attention.
To date, I have identified 197 species of wildflowers mainly on this 38 acres. 🙂 T thought there were only around 130 but iNaturalist says I have listed 197 different species. I think I have Identified 10 or so already this spring but I am waiting for a few to flower before they count.
First off is Chaerophyllum procumbens (L.) Crantz (kee-roh-FIL-um pro-KUM-benz) commonly known as Spreading Chervil or Wild Chervil. It shares the latter name with Chaerophyllum tainturieri which is its twin. One of the only ways to tell the difference is by their seeds. Hmmm… Both species are Missouri natives are only found in North America. Plants of the World Online lists 70 species in the genus which are spread throughout much of the world. The species was named by Heinrich Johann Nepomuk von Crantz in 1767.
No doubt, most of you have encountered this Chervil in your yard, gardens, flower beds, on walks in the woods, or somewhere. Of course, it has been here for YEARS but I just now properly identified it… 🙂 Some species are edible and even used as a root crop. Chervil rings a bell for some reason. Oh yeah. CHERVIL! It is not the same plant you use in recipes. That is apparently Anthriscus cerefolium commonly known as Garden Chervil or French Parsley. They look very similar but are not native to the U.S. and not found in Missouri in the wild. Both are members of the Apiaceae Family with a total of 444 genera… Just in case you were wondering. I feel like a plant nerd. 🙂
I found this cutie close to the fence near the swampy area in the back southeast section of the farm. It was a single solitary plant and the flower wasn’t open. I took several photos of it then walked about 12 feet away and found A LOT more… With open flowers.
I identified this species as Claytonia virginica L. (klay-TOH-nee-uh vir-JIN-ih-kuh) also known as Virginia Spring Beauty. Both the genus and species were named by Carl von Linnaeus in 1753. This is the only plant I have identified in the Montiaceae Family which is known as the Miner’s Lettuce Family.
According to Wikipedia, the Iroquois used Claytonia virginica as a cold infusion or a decoction made of the powdered roots for children to treat convulsions. They also ate the roots because they believed they permanently prevented conception. The Iroquois and Algonquin people cooked their roots like potatoes. The leaves and stem are also edible…
Even though the leaves are edible you would starve because there are very few leaves, usually only one pair about halfway up the stem. Some stems didn’t even have basal leaves.
There are a lot of Viola sororia (Common Blue Violet) here and there on the farm but this IS NOT that plant. I found THIS PLANT close to where I previously stored hay at the edge of some trees close to the ditch that drains into the pond. GEEZ! I feel like I need to draw a good map and letter the locations. This Viola bicolor, and a few others, was happy swaying in the wind making it somewhat difficult to get a good shot. Its common name is American Field Pansy or Johnny Jump-Up. It doesn’t look like the Johnny Jump-Ups I have seen before. Hmmm… That would be Viola tricolor. Anyway, the species was named by Frederick Traugott Pursh in Flora Americae Septentrionalis in 1813. Plants of the World Online lists this species as Viola rafinesquei with Viola bicolor as a synonym.
Their leaves are a lot different but while looking at the Missouri Plants website there are several different species of Viola found in Missouri with many different leaf types.
Then, after I found the highlight of this post, I found a clump of another species of Viola in an area behind the chicken house. This is Viola missouriensis, commonly known as the Missouri Violet. You may also notice the date is different because I had re-take photos of this clump. The 11th was kind of windy and its photos didn’t come out the very best. Even so, it was still first identified on the 11th.
This species was named and described by Edward Lee Green in 1900. While various species of Viola can come in multiple shades of blues and violets, this one was different because…
It has longer leaves. The normal violets around here have leaves that are approximately 3″ wide x 3″ long. The Viola missouriensis has leaves that are longer than they are wide otherwise it would be a different shade of Viola sororia. Several species are very similar, and like I said, all of them can have various shades of flowers. It is a breakthrough when you do find one that has something to distinguish them from the others besides the flowers.
IT’S AN ALBINO!
Tony, I realize you are excited about the Mulberry cuttings but in my neck of the woods finding a white Lamium purpureum tops Mulberrys any day. 🙂 Seeing the first one stopped me dead in my tracks!
There are THOUSANDS of Lamium purpureum here and countless hundreds of millions throughout the countryside. It was quite a moment finding several clumps with white flowers in this one area.
Even the leaves are a paler shade of green.
Observing and identifying new wildflower species has been very enjoyable. When I say “new”, they aren’t “NEW”, just new to me. They have been here all along I am just now noticing them. Without cows grazing in the pastures, there is no telling how many I will find. Finding plants that have weird flowers is also exciting, like the pink Achillea millefolium (Common Yarrow) and Daucus carota (Queen Anne’s Lace) last year on Kevin’s farm.
I think that is all for now. Until next time, be safe, stay positive, and always be thankful.
So, white Lamium purpureum is cool; but only because it blooms white, . . . and maybe because the foliage is prettier in plain soft green, without that weird purplish blush. But really, we all know what the best native species in your region is. (Don’t get me started.)
Claytonia virginica seems to be something that everyone in the East is familiar with. Some lack the veining. I would not notice it much except that there is something here that looks just like it. When I want to identify it, I can not find it. Even among the redwoods, such flowers bloom only briefly. I have not seen one with veining here. It lives in the some of the same spots where miners’ lettuce is.
Viola bicolor is a name commonly used for other unidentified species in that genus, including at least one here, very far from the native range. Those species are not easy to keep track of!
There was something else I was supposed to mention, but I an save it for later.
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Hello Tony! I… Ummmm… It may be true this Lamium purpureum is special because it has white flowers. When you find the flower you are thinking about, try using iNaturalist to help identify it. The Viola genus is complex and species hybridize with one another. More aggressive species seem to run rampant. People used to give every plant with different color flowers a different name but now they realize some species are variable in that way. Missouri Plants lists 10 species of Viola and they are distinctly different in more ways than just the flower color. If you use iNaturalist you can drag and drop your photos, enter your location, and it will give you pretty accurate choices. When you submit your observation, if you sign up and everything, others will view your observation and either agree or give you a better suggestion. I am not a mind reader, but I have a pretty good idea what it was you were thinking about mentioning. 🙂 Take care and thanks for the comment!
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Some species are crazily difficult to identify with, even some of the easy ones. Yuccas are another crazy genus. So are the Sambucus. There are only two species of blue elderberry and no black elderberry here. I am pretty certain that I know what is what; but with all the confusion, I just stopped caring.
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I know what you mean. There are a few Symphyotrichum species here I have difficulty with. They look so much alike I either several species of just one.
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