Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wildflowers, Carnivorous Plants and Wild Edibles in Baxter State Park

A Mystery Wildflower

There are some wild things growing in Maine's Baxter State Park. This looks like a nice bog, right?
My son knelt down and pointed out two species of carnivorous plants. Yikes!

1. the Pitcher Plant traps and drowns insects.

2. Sundew is sinisterly sticky. 

We decided to stay on the viewing platform.

In the woods, we foraged for bunchberry from the dogwood family.
My son described the taste as plum/tomato.
He'd learned plant ID from 
Chewonki Wilderness Trips.

I didn't need his help identifying laurel, which grows all over Maine.

Neither one of us could ID this common wildflower,
featured in the opening shot. 
It lined all the roads.
It's too tall for common dandelion 
and the leaves don't look right for cat's ear.
(Thanks, Gail, for identifying the Kirgia and for hosting.)

It thrived on woodland paths in mid July. Any idea what it is?

More about our Baxter trip here:

Visit Wildflower Wednesday hosted at Clay and Limestone
This is my first time.

Reminder: Friday 9/28 is the 10X10 Art Show in Brunswick, Maine.

17 comments:

Alison said...

I think your unknown wildflower is Cat’s ear (Hypochoeris radicata). It's similar enough to dandelion that it is often mistaken for it. Great pictures of the carnivorous plants! Nice post, I loved taking this walk with you.

Sarah Laurence said...

Alison, welcome to my blog! The bloom does look like cat's ear but the foliage is different. I've added a new photo (second from botton) that shows the leaves better. If only I'd asked a ranger. It's so nice to connect to you!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

I once gave my father a Venus Fly-Trap for Father's Day. He adored that thing!
Enjoy your gorgeous Maine autumn. The best place to be this time of the year!
xo,
p

Alyson (New England Living) said...

I love walking through bogs! That is a beautiful one. Love your photos, as always!

Amanda said...

i'm unable to id your dandelion lookalike, but am intrigued by it's geometrically pleasing petals. your son has quite the eye to identify those two carnivorous plants - would never have guessed those exist in a non tropical environment. curious to know how were sure of the bunchberry's safety to consume? we have a dogwood behind the house that is currently littering the driveway with similar colorful berries.

A Cuban In London said...

I like the idea of having a Wild Flower Wednesday. There's already a Shadow Shot Sunday. I loved, loved the last photo. I wonder how long that luscious green will last! :-)

Greetings from London.

Carol said...

Dear Sarah, I do know that plant but cannot summon up the name from my tired data base mind right now. Someone over at Wildflower Weds. should be able to though. Gail is a wonderful wildflower and pollinator guru. Lovely post. Fascinating to see the carnivorous plants too. Stunning area and I remember your other wonderful posts about this area very well too.
ps . . . my second try . . . your word verification is very hard.

Lea said...

Beautiful scenic place!
Love the wildflower photos!
Have a wonderful day!
Lea
Lea's Menagerie

Petra said...

Sarah, I also know the yellow flower by sight so I've tried to identify it and it seems to me that it might be Hawkweed Ox-tongue (Picris hieracioides). Will you have a look at it?

Rose said...

I love that last photo--such a beautiful place for a walk! I'm sorry I'm no help on the yellow wildflower either, but I'm sure Gail will pop over sometime and I'm betting she can i.d. it. So many pretty--and different--wildflowers here; I had no idea Sundew grew in the wild in Maine!

Gail said...

I've wanted to visit your part of the world for ever! Now I want to go even more. Thank you for sharing your walk...I hope to someday come upon pitcher plants growing in their natural habitat! gail PS I love bloggers and how helpful they can be~cool that you found your mystery plant ID.

Sarah Laurence said...

Pamela, what an original gift!

Alyson, so nice to have you back!

Amanda, I wouldn't recommending trying wild edibles without an expert. My son warned that some people have adverse reaction even to the "safe" ones.

ACIL, those photos were taken in July. The leaves are already changing in Maine.

Carol, If you recall the name, do let me know. I shall ask Gail since we still don't have a positive ID. I'm sorry about the word verification. I don't have any control over it and have similar issues on other blogs. I'm not online enough to screen comments without it. If you know of another option, let me know

Lea, thank you and welcome to my blog!

Petra, good guess. The bloom is similar but the stalk and foliage are different.

Rose, I hope Gail can ID it for us.

Gail, thanks for hosting! Unfortunately know one has been able to ID my mystery plant yet although we've had some good guesses. Do you know what it is?

Gail said...

Sarah, Is it possibly a Krigia maybe K virginica which is native to some of Maine. gail

Sarah Laurence said...

Gail, I think that's the closest match yet, thanks!

☆sapphire said...

What a lovely place to walk!! I found many interesting plants that we don't have in our bogs; the Pitcher Plant, Sundew, and bunchberry! The bunchberry's leaves have a geometrically beautiful design. They remind me of some formulas for calculating area in high school!

Corner Gardener Sue said...

Hi Sarah,
What a beautiful place you live near! I enjoyed the wide views and close ups. I hope you have the mystery plant identified. The blooms themselves remind me of chicory, which has blue blooms. The leaves are very different.

Sarah Laurence said...

Sapphire, I love your comment about the bunchberry reminding you of mathematics. My son loves math too.

Sue, Gail seems to have the best ID: Kirgia. It was certainly a challenging plant. It's so nice to connect with another fan of wildflowers!