Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Winter Weeds: An ID Challenge

 Gray and gusty today.  Not the nicest day for a walk, but hey, it wasn't raining!  I needed to take a break from holiday busyness and get a little exercise, so a walk along nearby Bog Meadow Nature Trail seemed just right.  Close to home, easy walking, and I could work up a little aerobic speed, since there's nothing to bring me to a halt this time of year.  Right?  Nah.  There's always something out there that requires close inspection by us nature nuts, whatever the season.

My amusement today was trying to identify the dried-up remains of summer's flowers and other curiosities.  Some of them I knew right away, others I'm not so sure of.  I thought it might be fun to let you, my readers, guess what these are, then compare your answers to mine when I return to label the photos in a day or so.  I'm hoping some of my botanist friends will fill in my knowledge gaps.  So take a stab at this and leave your guesses in the comments.  Have fun!

Update:  I've posted the answers in the comments, but don't let that stop you from still trying this quiz.
















Elizabeth said...

Hahaha, I love no. 8 -- very Little Shop of Horrors. ("Feed me, Seymour!") Some of these look familiar, but I'll leave the guessing to the more botanically inclined. :P Fascinating pictures as always, even in this "dead" season!

suep said...

oh cripes, this was my idea and now I have to play !
well I should put a question mark after most of them, but here goes:

1. ??
2. virgin's bower
3. dock (yellow?)
4. sensitive fern
5. wild grape
6. meadowsweet
7. evening primrose
8. turtle head ?
9. willow herb
10. vervain?
11. alder
12. hawthorne?
13. "yellow jelly"
14. "tree ear jelly"

Jacqueline Donnelly said...

OK, here goes with the answers, and I thank Elizabeth and Sue for weighing in, although I don't know where all my botanist friends are hiding right now. As you will see, Sue pretty much knocked this quiz out of the park. Of course, I had an advantage because I walk this trail in all seasons and know these plants when they are in full flower.

1. Flat-topped Aster
2. Virgin's Bower, also known as Old Man's Beard at this stage.
3. Dock, probably Swamp Dock
4. Sensitive Fern, spore stalks
5. Wild Grape, probably River Grape
6. Meadowsweet
7. Evening Primrose
8. Turtlehead
9. Northern Willow Herb
10.Probably White Vervain
11.Alder, but I'm not sure which species
12. What could it be but Hawthorne? But which species? I don't know.
13. Orange Jelly Fungus
12. Wood Ear Fungus, also known as Tree Ear.

hikeagiant2 said...

It's wonderful, what one can "see" if one looks - what beauty - textures, contrasts, and idiosyncratic shapes - treasures of Nature! What wonderful gifts! Merry Christmas!