Sunday, February 22, 2009

Hepatica americana

Hepatica americana

We saw the first Hepatica in flower this morning. It was expected; it's one of the first of our native woodland wildflowers to flower. We'd actually made a detour on our walk to see if flowers were open in a spot we knew and we weren't disappointed.

I checked for a post about seeing Hepatica last year (it was on February 29) -- I couldn't remember if I'd made one, but of course, I had. This is an image that my gardening companion took last year.

Hepatica flowers open in late morning and close at night. I love retelling the story about the entire lab group in Germany (where I studied after graduate school) making the trek to see the first Hepatica nobilis flowering in the snow.

A
beloved symbol of spring in Northern Europe, I'm also reminded of the graceful Hepatica logo for an International Botanical Congress in Berlin years ago.

4 comments:

  1. I love this sweet wildflower...and have a bit that visits me each spring...I've noticed the toothwort is up, but haven't seen the hepatica yet...gail

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  2. Hepatica is a favorite of mine as well. I've never seen it in the wild in Massachusetts - I found your blog looking for a Mass location to check.

    I did see my first butterfly of the season today, an Eastern comma. Greetings from a Mass Butterfly club member! Stop by my blog Nature Diary (http://tomwhelan.wordpress.com) if you have a chance.

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  3. Hepatica is certainly lovely-- and Tom, I hope you'll be able to find a location in Massachusetts!

    It's not very abundant here in the SC Piedmont, but it's always fun to look for the spots we know it's there.

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  4. Found my first Hepatica of the year today - St. Lawrence County, NY. (about as far north in NY as you can get) The flower was just opening up so I expect a good flush of blooms soon.

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