Field of Science

Native plant sort of

TPP is not a native plant purist because he is also a compulsive plant collector.  Hey, everything is native somewhere.  However in a rather gray area are cultivars of native plants where the species is native, but cultivars exist.  Generally these grow fine because the basic genome is adapted to your area.  Here's one of these problematic plants that is a quite handsome spring woodland ephemeral, rue anemone (Thalictrum thalictroides formerly Anemonella thalictroides - buttercup family)(Yes, another taxonomic change that is messing with 40+ years of memory)The cultivar has pinky-purple foliage more or less retaining a juvenile character because young shoots are more pigmented than the mature foliage.  The cultivar also has some pigmentation in the flowers, which are more or less white in the wild.  And the flower is doubled, so stamens develop as petalloid sepals.  In the wild the flowers can have 5-10 petalloid sepals (It always bothered students when the number was 6 and they head the wrong way in the ID key) and the color is variable with naturally occurring pinky flowers not uncommon, but never seen a wild one doubled.  However this is not an unusual type of developmental aberration in the buttercup family. How can you not like this little plant? It's cute. Those flowers are not quite an inch in diameter and as you can determine both  from the date and the leaf litter, they flower early.

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