Sunday, December 26, 2010
At the time that I took these photos, I was under the impression that Piloblephis rigida was endemic to Florida, but it appears that it is also known from a couple of locations in Georgia, where it is ranked S1. Piloblephis rigida grows in dry communites such as scrub, sandhills, and pine flatwoods. As with many mints, Wild Pennyroyal has various medicinal uses, including treatment of colds, fevers, and sores; it has also been used to induce vomiting.
You may be thinking, "that sure looks like a Satureja or Clinopodium." In fact, this low shrub is treated by some botanists as Satureja rigida or Clinopodium rigidum.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Can you name the plant, and the bug that makes these markings? Should be easy!
Prem and Scott both suggested, correctly, that the bug that does this is a leaf miner. I apologize that I can't call out the exact type. Scott suggested that the plant is Aster cordifolius, (Heart-Leaved Aster), and that is correct. Good work Prem and Scott!
Friday, December 10, 2010
Spiranthes is from the Greek words "speira" and "anthos," which mean spiral and flower, respectively. A look at the inflorescence makes clear how the genus got its name. Lucida means "shining," a reference to the very shiny leaves of this species. The bright yellow spot on the lip in combination with the early (relative to other Spiranthes) flowering time make this species an easy ID, if you can find it. Spiranthes lucida is known from much of the northern 2/3 of eastern North America, but it is a species of concern in ten states. You can find Shining Lady's Tresses in wet, calcareous areas with little competition, often in areas with some disturbance (such as lake margins and streambanks).
Monday, December 6, 2010
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Hybrid Lady's Slipper. This is a hybrid of the two previous species, Small White and Small Yellow Lady's Slipper. Depending on your treatment of the large and small yellows (as varieties or distinct species), this hybrid is either Cypripedium X andrewsii or Cypripedium X favillianum (see Swink and Wilhelm, 1994). This orchid is known to backcross with parents, resulting in a "hybrid swarm."
"Every creature is better alive than dead, men and moose and pine trees, and he who understands it aright will rather preserve life than destroy it." Henry David Thoreau, The Maine Woods