Saturday, May 14, 2011

Trilliums and More

Yesterday I tried to post a blog update three times.  You could look at the blog, but the posting software was down for maintenance.

Two days ago I saw the first trillium blooms of the season over by Sable Falls.

Trillium is a group of about 40–50 species of spring ephemeral perennials, native to temperate regions of North America and Asia. The above ground parts of Trilliums are scapes with three large, leaf-like bracts with the true leaves reduced to underground papery coverings around the rhizomes.

Picking a trillium seriously injures the plant by preventing the leaf-like bracts from producing food for the next year. A plant takes many years to recover. For this reason in Michigan and Minnesota it is illegal to pick and/or transplant trilliums from public lands without a permit from the State.

While it is a popular belief that it is illegal to pick the common Trillium grandiflorum (white trillium) in Ontario, in reality they are only protected in provincial parks and land owned by conservation authorities. However, the rare Trillium flexipes (drooping trillium) is protected by law in Ontario, because of its very small Canadian population.

Trillium is one of many plants whose seeds are spread by ants. At maturity, the base and core of the trillium ovary turns soft and spongy. Trillium seeds have a fleshy organ called an elaiosome that attracts ants. The ants extract the seeds from the decaying ovary and take them to their nest, where they eat the elaiosomes and put the seeds in their garbage, where they germinate in a rich growing medium.

Some trilliums have a flower which is bent downward, below the leaves.

A white trillium serves as the emblem and official flower of the Canadian province of Ontario. It is an official symbol of the Government of Ontario. The large white trillium is the official wildflower of Ohio.[

Another spring wild flower....

Agate pickers have been out on the beach.....

We had a thunderstorm the other night with torrential down pours.  You can see below that the heavy rains resulted in some erosion along the Grand Sable Banks.  At the base a clay-like mud flowed down from the dunes.

Some of the white birch paths through the woods have forest floors that are waking up this spring with all types of greenery.

A beach walker...

1 comment:

  1. thanks for the pics. I so miss the big lake.