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Oregon Wildflowers: The White Day

August 18, 2011, 6:48

During the month-long search for Drosera rotundifolia’s flowers, repeated trips were required, and were made to the Western Cascade site. Most people probably think that going to the same area over and over again in a short amount of time would be redundant and boring (after all, it doesn’t take long to memorize a trail and know exactly how many more footsteps until you reach your destination), but it’s actually quite the contrary. As it turns out, the repetition (and inevitable familiarity) can be a very enlightening experience. After returning each week, I found that one of the rewards of making many trips in such a short time span is that you get to see the succession and all the going-ons of the plants and trees coming in, and going out of season. On this day we ventured out, almost all of the flowers we spied were white.

A cluster of Trautvetteria caroliniensis, or false bugbane.

Leucanthemum vulgare, aka oxeye daisy. This "flower" is actually composed of two types of flowers: disk flowers (the numerous little yellow ones in the middle), and ray flowers (each petal terminates at the center with its own flower). The ray flowers attract pollinators and the disc flowers cluster closely together to offer easy pollen transfer.

Parnassia fimbriata, or fringed grass-of-parnassus.

This Caltha biflora, or elkslip, has already been pollinated and is producing fruit in its swollen ovaries.

Many people believe that foxglove, or Digitalis purpurea, is an Oregon native, but it's actually a European species that was introduced to the PNW

Digitalis purpurea with spider

And just for a little splash of color..

A purple aster in the Asteraceae family. Similar to the oxeye daisy, which is also in the Asteraceae family, this "flower" has a composite head and is composed of disk and ray flowers.

Castilleja miniata, or common red paintbrush

One Comment leave one →
  1. September 3, 2011, 3:28 3:28 am

    Wonderful! My favorite is the 1st picture and runner up is the foxglove with the spider! Well done!

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