Mmmm, pointy.

Since moving to Wisconsin I’ve encountered many new-to-me wildflowers. In NH I traveled about 45 minutes to photograph round-lobed hepatica and these days my yard is full of them. Now I travel not quite as far to find pointed-lobed hepatica which is not found in my yard, but boy was the section of Ice Age Trail blanketed in them!

Welcome to the greening

The first difference I noticed was that pointed-lobed (PL) come in more colors than does round-lobed (RL) and the instances of those colors seem to be common and white less so. Nearly the opposite of RL.

Clique

Taking pictures of these beauties was a little difficult because they were so thick on the ground along with other wildflowers. It was really hard to take a step without crushing something. Impossible in spots even though I walked slowly, carefully and kept my eyes open. By taking my time this way, I noticed that the texture of the flower petals seems smoother and waxier with the PL variety.

Craving

Another thing I noticed was that many of the flowers have double petals – the percentage is much higher in PL than in RL. I don’t know if it’s a random genetic mutation or a strategic adaptation tied to pollination, but it was noticeable.

Sharing secrets

Also the plants themselves are larger – on average 50%. The blossoms are more numerous as well as being taller.

Pointy leaves!

All-in-all it was fascinating to find them in such profusion and that they were so distinct from their round-lobed cousins.

Ice cream social

I have a feeling I’ll be visiting more of the areas that have these beauties come next spring!

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2 thoughts on “Mmmm, pointy.

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  1. Hepaticas are one of my favorite early spring wildflowers. They are so dainty, so pretty, and seem so vulnerable, yet they bravely bloom before most of the others. Here, in the Virginia mountains, hepaticas were in bloom back in late March, I believe.

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