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Blooming on Laurel Mountain | Outdoors My Window

Buttercups on Laurel Mountain, 30 May 2022 (photo by Kate St. John)

31 May 2022

Yesterday I went birding with friends on Laurel Mountain near Spruce Flats Bog. The top of the mountain is always colder than Pittsburgh so the wildflowers bloom later or are specialists for the mountain’s climate zone. Here’s what was blooming on Memorial Day.

A patch of buttercups glowed in the sun while dwarf ginseng (Panax trifolius) bloomed in the shade, viewed from above and side.

Dwarf ginseng, 30 May 2022 (photo by Kate St. John)
Dwarf ginseng, 30 May 2022 (photo by Kate St. John)

Canada may-lily (Maianthemum canadense) is a native plant just 2-6″ tall that resembles lily-of-the-valley. A tiny spider draped this one in sticky filaments.

Canada mayflower, 30 May 2022 (photo by Kate St. John)

Lycopodium or tree groundpine is another “living fossil” that does not bloom as a flower. Instead it reproduces asexually via spores from the strobilis (cone) or sexually via underground gametes. The strobilis on this one is past its prime.

Lycopodium is about 410 million years old and thrived with horsetails in the Carboniferous era.

Lycopodium, 30 May 2022 (photo by Kate St. John)

(photos by Kate St. John)

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