Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Rue Anemone

Rue Anemone, Anemonella thalictroides, is the most common spring woodland wildflower at Blue Jay Barrens this year. It is also commonly referred to as Windflower because of its tendency to move with the slightest breeze. With the windy weather we’ve been having lately, it was almost impossible to find a plant that would hold still long enough for me to get a clear shot.
Even though it’s a small plant, the flower shines in the sunlight. The flower of the Rue Anemone actually lacks petals. It’s the sepals that you are seeing. This fact doesn’t make the flower any less attractive and probably falls into the “so what” category for most people.
I find this plant growing over a wide variety of shady habitats. The plant is mildly toxic. This may cause the deer and turkey to avoid it in favor of the other spring wildflowers. If the deer and turkey numbers continue to grow, this may end up being my only spring wildflower.
Although it produces no nectar, the flower is visited by many insects. Bees and flies are attracted by the pollen. I think other insects just visit because it looks a likely place to find nectar.
There are usually a couple of buds in wait behind the first bloom. This helps to keep the Rue Anemone blooming over a fairly long period.
Many sources put Rue Anemone in the genus Thalictrum along with the Meadow Rues. The leaves certainly resemble that group. No matter what name you choose, it’s still a fascinating plant.


  1. Hi Steve...Tiny and sweet even if danger lurks within!!
    Great leaf pattern and buds are as pretty as the flower itself!!

  2. I agree, Lois.

    Hi, grammie g. Plants have so many interesting and beautiful parts. I feel sorry for people who don't look beyond the bloom.

    Thanks, Michael.

  3. That's a pretty little flower. I'd love to see what the sepals look like under UV light.

  4. Hi, Katie. I'm not sure what they would look like under UV light.