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What Happened in 2014?

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Posted October 12, 2014 by FRU

On October 9, 2014 Kathy and I went to High Rock Farm in Cumberland to search for Autumn Coralroot Orchid (Corallorhiza odontorhiza).  We found four fresh plants in bloom at two different sites. We usually find more plants, but the summer drought has probably reduced the number of plants.  The dry weather also seemed to affect the blooming of the Spotted Coralroot Orchid as we only saw one of these this summer.

Autumn Coralroot OrchidClose-up of Auutmn Coralroot blossomAutumn Coralroot flower stalk



Posted October 9, 2014 by FRU

Close-up of Polanisia dodecandra ssp. dodecandraPolanisia dodecandra ssp. dodecandra plant On September 12, 2014, the plant Red-whiskered Clammyweed was found in Lincoln, RI growing along the shore of the Blackstone River.  This is the first time this plant has been reported from RI.

Red-whiskered Clammyweed (Polanisia dodecandra ssp. dodecandra) is a member of the Spider-flower family (Cleomaceae).

The specimen which was found in Lincoln was about 6-8″tall, with alternate leaves with three leaflets.  The stem was very hairy and sticky and held two flower buds. On September 23, one of the buds opened to reveal a pink flower with four clawed petals and six stamens. The clawed petals are similar to the petals of Cleome (Spider-flower) which is cultivated as a garden plant.

The fruit, a capsule, was forming on the plant by October 9, 2014.  There was also an additional flower bud forming.

There are two subspecies of Polanisia, ssp. dodecandra is the one which was found in RI.  The common name, Red-whiskered Clammyweed comes from the long, protruding stamens of subspecies trachysperma.

According to Flora Novae Angliae ssp. dodecandra is found inn CT, MA, NH and VT.  RI can now be added to this list.


Posted August 15, 2014 by kbarton

Horse BalmTrillium fruitNancy F and I were out wandering the Limerock Preserve in Lincoln. We saw Broad Beech Fern (Phegopteris hexagonoptera), White Baneberry (Actaea pachypoda), Rattlesnake Fern (Botrychium virginianum), Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum pedatum), Maidenhair Spleenwort (Asplenium trichomanes), Horse Balm (Collinsonia canadensis -- photo at left) and Nodding Trillium (Trillium cernuum--photo at right). The Trillium had a beautiful ripened seed pod. Unfortunately the Walking Fern (Asplenium rhizophyllum) has not done well over the past two years and is down to 2 small plants. This is the only site in the state for this plant.


Posted July 31, 2014 by kbarton

Fran and I were out to Neutaconkanut Hill today and found Lopseed (Phryma leptostachya) and Aniseroot (Osmorhiza longistylis). Everytime we found Lopseed it was growing with Hog Peanut (Amphicarpaea bracteata). Here's two images of Lopseed. Note the Hog peanut climbing up it.

Lopseed plantLopseed seedhead


Posted July 13, 2014 by FRU

At the Sprague Farm in Glocester on July 13, 2014;

The light blue color of Spiked Lobelia (Lobelia spicata) blossoms and the bright yellow Small Sundrops, Oenothera perennis were making a nice display in one of the fields.  Ragged Fringed Orchid was also blooming in the swampy area although the plant was so small that at first I thought it was the Green Woodland Orchid (Platanthera clavellata) in bloom.

Spiked Lobelia Small Sundrops

Buck Hill, Burrillville, RI July 13, 2014 

Water PennywortsIn Burrillville at Buck Hill there were many Water Pennyworts, Hydrocotyle americana,  in bloom along the edge of a dirt road.  This plant is an obligate wetland plant yet it grows luxuriously toward the top of a hill where there is no obvious source of water.



Posted July 12, 2014 by FRU

Here are some photos of a few plants which were in bloom in North Kingstown on July 12, 2014. Platanther lacera, Ragged Fringed Orchid, was in bloom with about 30 flowers and 20 flower buds yet to open.  Swamp Candles (Lysimachia terrestris) and Meadow Beauty (Rhexia virginica) brightened the wet fields with the lowly Portulaca (Portulaca oleracea: aka Common Purslane) flowering as a weed in the garden.


Ragged Fringed Orchid Swamp Candles Meadow Beauty Portulaca


Posted July 11, 2014 by kb

Sericocarpus linifoliussericocarpus close-upFran and I were out in Exeter today and found Sericocarpus linifolius (Narrow-leaved White-topped Aster) and Asclepias tuberosa (Butterflyweed).

ButterflyweedButterflyweed close-up


Posted May 27, 2014 by NF

I was out on the Milton Gowdey Trail at Parker Woodland and found this lovely fragrant Early Azalea (Rhododendron prinophyllum) in bloom. Also Yellow Stargrass (Hypoxis hirsuta) along the trail.

Early Azalea Another Early AzaleaYellow Stargrass



Posted May 17, 2014 by NF

Mayapple in BloomMayapple close-upI was at Parker Woodland this afternoon and on the way home stopped and got some photos of the mayapple blooming along Maple Valley Rd.




Posted May 17, 2014 by kb

Yellow LadyslipperDouble Yellow LadyslipperYesterday, Fran and I were out in Cumberland checking on the Yellow Ladyslippers (Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens). There were 13 plants in bloom and three of them had double blossoms.




Posted May 7, 2014 by kb

Early CoralrootEarly Coralroot blossomYesterday, Fran and I were out at Pinetop and found Early Coralroot (Corallorhiza trifida var. verna) in bloom. Coralroot is a parasitic orchid that lives underground and is only visible when it sends up its blossom stalk.  Early Coralroot is of state concern. We also found Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustris), Wood Anemone (Anemone quinquefolia), and Bellwort (Uvularia sessilifolia) in bloom. 

Marsh MarigoldWood AnemoneBellwort


Posted May 6, 2014 by FRU

Wild ColumbineWild Columbine Close-upWild Columbine (Aquilegia Canadensis) was in full bloom in Exeter on May 3.




Spring AvensClose up of Spring AvensIn Providence on May 5, a plant unknown to RI, Spring Avens, was found in bloom. It is also growing in Johnston close to the Providence site.  I am not aware of any other reports of Spring Avens for RI.  It is native in New England only in VT where it is State Historical. 

There is one report of it in western MA where it was introduced.


Posted May 1, 2014 by FRU

Today (4/28/14) in Burlingame I saw three species of plants in bloom; Viola labradorica (American Dog Violet), Viola pallens (Smooth White Violet) and Anemone quinquefolia (Wood Anemone). Also along the Wood River I photographed Ranunculus ficaria (Lesser Celandine) in bloom.  Lesser Celandine is introduced and not a native plant.

American Dog VioletSmooth White VioletWood AnemoneLesser Celandine


Posted April 24, 2014 by NF

Seems like Spring is finally here! My husband and I took a ride though the back roads of Exeter last Sunday—saw Spicebush and lots of Coltsfoot in bloom.  Yesterday we checked out a spot along Ponagansett Road and saw some Bloodroot.  Today, I found 2 Ovate leaved violets in flower behind our house where it's bright and sunny on a banking at the edge of the woods


Posted April 24, 2014 by kb

Yellow Ladyslipper just sprouting upMarsh Marigold in bloomThe Yellow ladyslippers are up in Cumberland and safely caged to protect them from deer browse. Marsh Marigold was brightening the wetland with its blossoms.




Posted April 19, 2014 by kb

Fran and I were out wandering in Arcadia on Thursday and came across Trailing Arbutus in bloom. Incredibly sweet-scented. Looks like spring is really going to happen.




Posted March 11, 2014 by ABW

I took Sammie (my dog who barked at every Canada Goose, every Brant, every person she saw) to Colt State Park to look in a wetlands for Skunk Cabbage. We found one—only one—red hood and it was only slightly open. There were no other signs of the plant at all. Red Maple buds were swelling and a few were beginning to split.  


Posted January 1, 204 by kb

Hey, It’s winter and not much is out there botanically. But if you can’t look at wildflowers in bloom then you can always go birding . . . which brings up a new birding club in RI. It’s  It’s about birds and birding in the state of Rhode Island and is not affiliated with any organization.  It has cool things like an up-to-date birding checklist and photos of rare or unusual birds. You can keep a list of your sightings on the RI Bird list page. But be warned. If you join, be prepared to id a bird.

Another organization that I want to mention is Mercy Ecology@NEW DAWN. It ‘s in Cumberland, RI and is an environmental ed center that offers programs that are both educational and fun for children, adults and families. It offers a variety of programs from moonlit hikes for adults to afterschool programs for kids. It’s also on Facebook.

Mercy Ecology’s mission is to instill reverence for Earth and to work towards sustainability of life by acting in harmony with all creation.



Posted January 1, 2014

Well, here we are at the fifth anniversary of Among RI Wildflowers. Since our start, we have had over 100,000 visitors to the site from 80 countries including the US.  Since March of last year, we have averaged over 100 visitors a day and had over 40,000 visitors for 2013.  Our first year, we had 7500 visitors and thought we were doing extraordinarily well.  

We appreciate everyone who contributed to the website with special thanks to Anne Wagner, Nancy Fullerton and the folks at RIWPS. 

Thanks to everyone who participated in the mystery plant contest.  If you would like to participate, but look at the photo and don’t feel confident that you’re right, you can always verify it with Newcomb’s. Most of the descriptions/clues are written so that you can look the plant up in Newcomb’s.  Not all the plants, but most of them.

As always, we welcome questions, comments, and involvement.

Fran and Kathy


Posted October 17, 2013 from FRU

LopseedLopseed plantsRecently I found a population of Lopseed (Phryma leptostachya) growing in rich woods in Providence County.

The plants usually bloom in July and August and had passed their prime by the time I found them in October.

Lopseed has opposite coarsely-toothed leaves and has a spike-like raceme of pink (or purple) to white flowers with a three lobed lip.

Apparently it is a very uncommon plant in RI although it is not on the rare plant list.

I have inquired of several people familiar with native plants and none of them has seen it growing in RI.  If you have seen Lopseed growing in RI please let us know.

Here are a few photos of the plants that I saw.  One photo shows the fruiting stalk with the achenes which are contained within the sepals.  The flowers are borne on short pedicels at right angle to the stalk and after the flowers are pollinated the pedicels “lop” down and hug the stalk. The achenes occur singly within the fruit.

I am looking forward to see the plants when they bloom next summer.

Below is a link for more information about Lopseed.