White Trout Lily, Erythronium albidum, grows throughout the woods, but is generally found as scattered plants instead of thick stands.
The droopy yellow flowers are quite showy from a distance of a few feet. From farther away they are hardly noticeable in the sun drenched woodland understory.
What people see are they highly visible pollen producing catkins that hang like miniature opossum tails from the branch. The female flower from which the edible nut will develop is represented by a tiny cluster of red pistils that wither soon after pollination.
The vibrant red blooms make this tree hard to miss. This is another species that has separate male and female flowers. Shown here are the male flowers. I couldn’t find any female flowers anywhere on the tree. The lack of female flowers causes me no distress since Red Maples can be aggressively invasive in open fields. I would be happiest if the tree didn’t produce any seeds.
This is Toad Trillium, Trillium sessile, my most common Trillium species. Unfortunately, the deer browse heavily on this plant and many will be eaten before they have an opportunity to bloom.
This is a hairier and slightly shorter version of the common Spring Cress. Spring Cress tends to be confined to the areas of moister soils, where as Purple Cress thrives from the flood plains to the driest ridge tops.
The distinctive leaves of Puttyroot, Aplectrum hyemale, are a promise of blooms to come later in the summer. It won’t be a showy bloom, but it’s what I’ve come to expect from the woodland flowers of Blue Jay Barrens and I know it will be enjoyed.