Pretty Milkmaids All in a Row
Come read about this week’s featured flower. Keep checking out these little snippets and you’ll soon know local flora like a pro.
Today, Cheryl Lisin of the Lost Coast Interpretive Association (like the Facebook page here--you’ll love the beautiful photos showing up in your status) talks about a delicate beauty–milkmaids.
The milk maids are blooming! Flowers start out pinkish and fade to white – presumably after they are pollinated. It is a perennial, coming up year after year from an underground rhizome. The lower leaves are roundish, leaves higher up on the stem are divided into 3 or 5 lobes. Some leaves have pretty purple splotches and solid purple undersides. Milk maids grow in moist, shady forests and riparian areas, usually one here, one there, but sometimes forming dense patches.
The scientific name is (Cardamine californica) and it is in the mustard family, Brassicaceae. Another common name is toothwort, named for tooth like projections on the rhizomes.
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