Thursday, May 19, 2011

Wild Ginger

Wild Ginger (Asarum canadense) has an interesting flower that blooms at ground level, beneath the leaves. Most plants elevate their blossoms to attract flying pollinators but Wild Ginger is pollinated by ground-dwelling beetles or flies. Later, its ripe seeds are dispersed by ants who collect them for the nutrients in each seed's elaiosome.

The plant is widely distributed throughout woodlands in the Eastern United States and Canada.

Wild Ginger is currently in bloom in Kalamazoo. The flowers aren't attention getting but they are worth a little search. I look for colonies of the plants (each with a pair of round-heart-shaped leaves) and then look underneath for the blossoms.

No comments: