Hepatica americana is a colorful and attractive member of the Ranunculaceae (Crowfoot or Buttercup Family). It has a special affinity for rotting oak leaves and shaded, acid sandy soil. The dark green leaves have three rounded lobes, often mottled with deep maroon. Flowers open in very early spring and range in color from white through pink to purple. New leaves emerge as flowers fade away. Photographed in the Ardmore section of South Bend, Indiana in January, 2012.