02/28/2010 The Pocket at Pigeon Mountain – Starting

Several days of warm weather over the past couple of weeks, as well as some sunshine, something we missed in early February, has brought about the beginning of the wildflowers at The Pocket at Pigeon Mountain. 

Hepatica nobilis

Hepatica nobilis - 02/28/2010

We walked the Shirley Miller Wildflower Trail, then the bluff trail up to the horse trail, and walked the horse trail back down to the parking area.  There were Harbinger of Spring – aka Pepper and Salt (Erigenia bulbosa) blooming along the boardwalk, and a couple of Hepatica buds about to open there.  There were also many trailing trillium unfurling all over the area, but I don’t expect blooms for a couple of weeks.  Once we got past the boardwalk on the trail to the falls, we spotted a couple of Hepatica blooming.  However, once we got onto the bluff trail our in the sun there were many hepatica in full bloom.  The blue one above was along the horse trail.  

We’re about two weeks behind where we were last year, but I suspect some warm weather will have us catching up soon.

Addendum 03/01/2010: I was looking at a photograph of Erigenia bulbosa that I took yesterday for the foliage, and noticed something I’d looked for along the trail but didn’t spot – a lone Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum) leaf.  Also noteworthy is that there were a few clusters of Virginia Bluebell leaves starting to push up through the cold, wet ground.

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