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Hepatica Americana OR.

Hepatica Americana OR.

Hepatica Americana

Hepatica americana is an early blooming wildflower with blue, white, or pink flowers most often found in shaded woodlands with rich organic soil. They begin blooming in mid-March in the southern part of their range to mid-May in the northernmost areas. The flowers close at night and on rainy days.Hepatica americana is very smilar in appearance to Hepatica acutiloba except that the lobes on the leaves of americana are blunt while those on acutiloba come to a point. The americana variety is usually found in drier areas than acutiloba, which has a preference for rocky slopes with higher calcium content.

Hepatica

One of the earliest woodland wildflowers, Hepatica americana (Roundleaf Liverleaf) is a charming perennial producing adorable bowl-shaped flowers, 1 in. across (2.5 cm), in early spring. Usually light blue to lavender, the blossoms may also be pale pink, purple or white. Rich in nectar, they are an important early source for many pollinators. The flowers close at night and on cloudy days when pollinators are unlikely to be flying. Borne atop fuzzy, leafless stems, the blossoms appear before the new foliage. After the flowers fade, the leaves take over. Handsome, they are leathery, wine-colored beneath, and divided into three rounded lobes. They keep the plant interesting after the blooms fade. As the first spring ephemeral to bloom, Hepatica americana is a jewel in the stark landscape. Low maintenance, it is best grown in places where it can remain undisturbed for years.

Hepaticas are among the first flowers to bloom in the spring. Sharp-lobed Hepatica and Round-lobed Hepatica have gone through a couple of name changes, at one time Hepatica acutiloba and H. americana respectively, and more recently considered different varieties of the same species, Hepatica nobilis var. acuta and var. obtusa respectively. Now they are different species again, in the Anemone genus, and closely related to the European species Anemone hepatica. The easiest way to differentiate Sharp-lobed from Round-lobed is—you guessed it—the round or pointed tips on leaves. The flowers are much the same and, while the tips of the bracts on Sharp-lobed may be more pointed than on Round-lobed, this can be subtle so is not necessarily a reliable distinction. Their ranges overlap significantly and may be found in the same habitat at the same time of year, though Round-lobed Hepatica may be found on drier sites in more acidic soils. (Source: www.minnesotawildflowers.info)

 

 

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