Sunday, October 31, 2010

Skullcap & Hardhack

Hardhack (1) - Copy

Spiraea tomentosa

Click here to view a very large image in a new tab or window
so that you can see the beauty of the blossoms.

John and I have a collection of over 120 different species of wildflowers that we have photographed and identified. The 120 are not all that we know. In fact, we are always finding species that we don't know. In the photographs from last July, we have found two new wildflowers that we have never seen before: hardhack and skullcap. Both are native to Vermont. Hardhack is photograph above and was taken here at home in the back field. It is in the Rose family and is also called steeple bush. The name hardhack comes from the tough stem that it has.

Common skullcap (1)

Scutellaria galericulata

Common skullcap (6)

The two photographs above are of common (or marshy) skullcap. There are hundreds of different species of skullcap. This is part of the Mint family. It has medicinal properties (but be careful that you read thoroughly all the information about skullcaps so that you don't harm yourself). The blossoms of skullcap are always in pairs and face the same direction.

The skullcap photos were taken when I returned to the Willoughby Bog with John on July 31. They were not serious photographs. I took them to gauge the light in the forest. But this weekend, while reviewing the photographs, we realized we should have paid more attention to this bloom. So the photos are fuzzy and poorly composed.Because of the poor quality, I cannot post the photographs to my Photo A Day blog.

There are now over 128 plants in our Plants of New England Collection. Click and visit!


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