Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Earliest Buttercups and Spring Beauties.
This earliest of buttercups carpets the grass around the picnic tables at Nashville's Edwin Warner Park. It is one of our first spring flowers, but I have never seen it anywhere other than the floodplain of the little Harpeth River. Its rosette of leaves hugs the ground and the flowers rise no more than 4 inches above them. I have looked in Jack Carman's indispensable "Wildflowers of Tennessee" and found that this plant may be the Swamp Buttercup-Ranunculus septentrionalis- a plant of the damp bottom lands. I was so overjoyed to see it yesterday for when it blooms winter is on its deathbed. The Spring Beauties were also blooming yesterday, and they are just as welcome. They are the white, starlike flowers in the first photos.