After some consideration I concluded that while I have trees and wildflowers readily available for identification, there are considerations that must be made for plants. One is that plants do not flower for the entirety of their life so identifying a plant solely by its flower is not ideal. The other is that some plants–excluding ferns and mosses, which are in their own section–do not flower at all or the flower is not unique for identification.
In this section (Plant Peculiarities) I will show some of the identifiable characteristics of plants other than their flowers. Bark is one trait that makes some plants stand out, whether by color or texture. Leaf shape or color can lend to a plant’s character. Berries, seeds, cones, nuts, legumes, or seedheads are also unique for many plants and can remain on or near a plant for a few seasons or longer. There are also a few plants with unique growing habits, specialized features, unusual coloration in wood or stem, and many other oddities. Some plants also have special symbiotic relationships to other organisms which become increasingly noticeable when identified. One example is the relationship between indian pipe plant (Monotropa uniflora) and beech and oak trees–the trees harbor a particular fungi in the soil among their roots which the plant parasitizes to gain energy without chlorophyll. In this way, the indian pipe plant is almost always found growing directly beneath the canopy of an oak or beech tree.
The following photos will be arranged so that one species’ traits are grouped together and any related species are separate.
CAUTION: UNDER CONSTRUCTION
remember your hardhat.