Friday, August 12, 2011

Wildflowers Far Away in Newfoundland

Ten weeks have passed since our last post.  During that time we drove 7,250 miles in our Prius to and from Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. (You may want to check the  Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism web site.)  Although our blog focuses primarily on wildflowers within 50 miles of Goshen, Indiana, we will share some of the flowers we found in Newfoundland and Labrador.  Early July is a prime flowering time there.   

(Please note: You may enlarge photos by double clicking on them.)
The Northern Pitcherplant, Sarracenia purpurea, is the provincial flower of Newfoundland and Labrador.  We saw it in many bogs and fens across the province.  There are a few sphagnum bogs in Indiana where we have found it too, including Lieber Nature Preserve near Bristol, IN.
Labrador Tea
Labrador Tea, Ledum groenlandicum, is also very common in Newfoundland, but does not occur in Michiana.  It is a member of the Heath family, which includes blueberries, laurels, rhododendrons and azaleas.
Sheep Laurel
Sheep Laurel, Kalmia angustifolia, often grows in bogs with Labrador Tea and Pitcherplants.

Blue Flag Iris at Gros Morne National Park

Blue Flag, Iris versicolor, grows in wet areas throughout Newfoundland.  We have another Blue Flag species, I. virginica, in Indiana. Gros Morne National Park is a wonderful place of landlocked fjords, ancient mountains, and picturesque harbor villages.
Twinflower, Linnea borealis, is a boreal [i.e., arctic]  plant, as the name indicates.  It is common in Newfoundland, but does not grow in Indiana.
Cloudberry or "Bake-apple"

Cloudberry or "Bake-apple", Rubus chamaemorus, and Plumboy, Rubus articus, are two close relatives of raspberries and blackberries that grow in northern climes.  At several of our "bed and breakfasts" and restaurants we enjoyed yellow bakeapple jam and pie.  The red Plumboy berries are not plentiful enough to make jam.  Neither grow in Indiana.

Two tiny species of Dogwood
 Bunchberry, Cornus canadensis, on the right, and Sweedish Bunchberry, C. suecica, on the left, are dogwoods that grow only a few inches high.  C. canadensis grows throughout northeastern U. S. and Canada [including Steuben, Lake & Porter Counties in Indiana].  C. suecica, the smaller of the two, is primarily an arctic plant.

Roseroot Stonecrop along the Gulf of Saint Lawrence
Roseroot Stonecrop, Sedum rosea, grows in dry rocky shores and cliffs.  We saw it on the rocky cliffs of an island near Bonavista, Nfld  where puffins were nesting.  It does not grow in Indiana.
Dragon's Mouth

Pink Lady's Slipper

Flat-petaled Yellow Lady's Slipper
Orchids don't grow only in Hawaii and greenhouses.  There are many native orchid species in Newfoundland and Indiana.  Dragon's Mouth, Arethusa bulbosa, grows in wetlands in Newfoundland; there have been a few reports of Dragon's Mouth in Indiana, but there are no pictures to document them.

We saw Pink Lady Slippers at several places in Newfoundland.  The only places we have seen it in Michiana are Pinhook Bog, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and Fernwood Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve.

We were pleased to find the rare "Flat-petaled Yellow Lady's Slipper", Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens, in bloom at Burnt Cape Ecological Preserve at the northern tip of Newfoundland.  Burnt Cape is an appropriate name - the terrain is rocky, dry and windswept.  Nonetheless, many rare plant species grow there.

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